Top 9 Cool Weather Calf Needs – Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus

Posted on February 26, 2015 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus dairy youngstock technical specialist As February draws to a close, we’re optimistic that warmer spring months are just around the corner.  But, realistically, we may still deal with a few more weeks of winter.  Here’s a quick reminder of the top calf needs in cool weather: Haircoat The calf’s

Meeting Energy Demands in the First Week of Life – Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus

Posted on February 26, 2015 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus dairy youngstock technical specialist When walking through calf barns and hutches during the winter, it is somewhat difficult to differentiate sickness behavior from cold stress behavior.  Interestingly, calf behaviors are quite similar when they are struggling with a disease challenge and when they are battling cold weather.  In young

Designing the First Heifer TMR – Cody Yanzick, Vita Plus

Posted on December 22, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Cody Yanzick, Vita Plus dairy specialist Calf raisers focus a lot on optimizing calf diets, but a solid heifer nutrition program is equally important.  Good feed management for weaned calves can keep that momentum going as heifers get older. Ingredient selection I like to incorporate some grass/alfalfa hay into the calf TMR as it

Ask the Expert: What Information is Found on a Feed Tag? – Dr. Al Schultz, Vita Plus

Posted on December 22, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dr. Al Schultz, Vita Plus vice president of technical services Question:  I want to have a good handle on what I’m feeding my calves, but feed tags can be difficult to understand.  What am I looking at and what do all the terms mean? A:  Every bag of commercial feed that is manufactured must

Regional Calf Report: Ohio – Dr. Owen Mickley, Vita Plus

Posted on December 22, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dr. Owen Mickley, Vita Plus dairy specialist What will winter have in store for us this year?  With last year’s brutally cold winter still fresh in our minds, are we prepared to deal with the winter challenges we’ll face this year? Let's go back to the basics as these fundamentals are key to our

Milk Replacers: Consistency Matters! – Dr. Max Thornsberry, Milk Specialties Global Animal Nutrition

Posted on October 27, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dr. Max Thornsberry, Milk Specialties Global Animal Nutrition The goal in mixing calf milk replacer is to consistently feed the same concentration of properly mixed milk replacer each feeding.  It is also necessary to feed calves their milk replacer meals at consistent intervals; in other words, the same time each day, hopefully at least

Good Quality Grain Makes All the Difference – Emma Waterworth, Vita Plus

Posted on August 24, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Emma Waterworth, Vita Plus Fall River grain marketing intern You know quality calf feed is vital to the health and development of a growing calf, but what makes a quality feed? A good pelleted calf starter or grower consists of clean grains and a good, hard pellet.  Several factors to consider while assessing grain

Ask the Expert: Should I Feed Texturized or Pelleted Starter? – Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus

Posted on August 22, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus dairy youngstock technical specialist Question:  I've heard arguments on both sides.  Which is better?  Texturized or pelleted starter feeds? A:  Since the early 1930s, researchers have evaluated the impact of calf starter grain formulation and physical form (texturized versus pelleted) on dry matter intake and calf growth.  There is

Dave Wood, Animix – Supplements for Pasteurized Milk & Milk Replacers: Choose Wi$ely

Posted on July 2, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
Click to download the PowerPoint presentation Article written by Peggy Coffeen, Progressive Dairyman When it comes to caring for calves, the options are endless for ingredients and additives that promise to promote health or increase gains, which is why David Wood, Animix, tells dairy producers to choose wisely. When evaluating calf supplements, Wood suggests keeping

Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus – Precision Calf Nutrition

Posted on July 2, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
Click to download the PowerPoint presentation Article written by Macy Sarbacker Precision nutrition is the idea that you treat the calf as an individual, according to Vita Plus Dairy Youngstock Technical Specialist Noah Litherland. If calves are not growing or are losing bodyweight, then the start of first lactation is delayed and potentially compromised. This

Pat Hoffman, Vita Plus – Real World Sources of Variance in Heifer Performance

Posted on July 2, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
Click to download the PowerPoint presentation Article written by Macy Sarbacker You’ve got a wobbly-legged, newborn heifer calf. She’s still wet and you’re drying her off. What do you know about the kind of cow she’s going to be? Are all calves born with the potential to become great dairy cows? What is the balance

Autofeeders: What Have We Learned? – Ann Hoskins, Vita Plus

Posted on April 30, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
We have learned many things along the way as autofeeders become more popular in the calf raising world.  On the dairy, we tend to learn most things through experience – good or bad.  While that makes it difficult to pinpoint exact “rights and wrongs,” learning from others’ experiences can help us focus on making the

Protein Matters: Meeting Calf Performance Goals – Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus

Posted on April 28, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dr. Noah Litherland, Vita Plus dairy youngstock technical specialist Protein is the single most important and expensive ingredient in milk replacers contributing to calf growth.  That doesn’t mean this macronutrient is easy to understand.  Exploring the sources and functions of protein can help you better select which milk replacer is right for your calf

Using Research-based Calf and Heifer Products – Pat Hoffman, Vita Plus

Posted on February 28, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Pat Hoffman, Vita Plus dairy technical specialist Most of us have heard the old cliché "milk doesn’t come from the store" and the cliché is common fabric among us whom are passionate about the dairy industry.  In short, it simply means we want to tell our story. The same can be said for dairy

The Skinny on Fat – Milk Products LLC

Posted on February 28, 2014 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Milk Products LLC calf nutrition team The energy calves need is most readily available to them by the fat in their diets. The best milk replacers start with high-quality, (human) edible-grade fat sources, which are the gold standard for animal milk replacers. Research supports the use of these high-quality fats to maintain the best

Don’t Short Calves on Vitamins and Trace Minerals – Dave Wood, Animix, LLC

Posted on December 20, 2013 in Starting Strong - Calf Care
By Dave Wood, director of technical services and sales, Animix, LLC Whole milk fails to meet basic vitamin and trace mineral requirements of the young milk-fed calf. Vitamin and trace mineral levels as reported by the USDA  and calf requirements as reported in the 2001 NRC for dairy cattle show that a gallon of whole