Gold Standards III, industry standards for animal welfare for dairy calves and heifers, are now available for all producers.

The standards were developed by a committee made up of dairy calf and heifer growers (both contract growers and dairy farmers), veterinarians, a calf and heifer management specialist and industry representatives. The document also was reviewed by the Animal Welfare Committee of the American Association of Bovine Practitioners and a panel of university experts.

The standards address:

•    Veterinarian involvement.

•    Colostrum management.

•    Housing.

•    Nutrition.

•    Animal handling.

•    Transportation.

•    Vaccination.

•    Drug therapy.

•    Parasite control.

•    Elective medical procedures and supportive care.

•    Euthanasia.

Like the Gold Standards I and II, Dairy Calf and Heifer Association’s Gold Standards III are carefully developed guidelines that are intended to help farmers improve their practices. The association hopes that by creating and publishing the Gold Standards III, all dairy calf and heifer producers — whether they are DCHA members or not — will be more mindful of animal welfare consideration and manage their operations accordingly.

Download the Gold Standards III at: http://bit.ly/qR7zqz