Report: More than 1,000 dairy calves die in heat wave

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More than 1,000 dairy calves have died in the Midwest heat wave, according to this story from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Half of the herds affected by the deaths are in Wisconsin, officials from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection said on Friday.

All cases involve dairy calves between two to seven days of age that have been housed in outdoor calf hutches with no shade, according to this news release from the agency.

"Dairy operators who are expecting calves or who have very new calves are advised to follow some of the same procedures used in high heat areas of the country, like Arizona, where it is common practice to hose down one- to seven-day-old calves with cool water in the late afternoon,” said Donald Sockett, epidemiologist/microbiologist with the Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.

For more tips on handling heat stress in calves, click here.

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David Brand    
Indiana  |  July, 22, 2012 at 02:30 PM

This is beyond senseless. Beyond the loss of the calves, how can someone just leave the little calves out in the sun? Have some common sense people!! Think how this looks beyond the dairy circles. Another bad publication for our industry.

TN  |  July, 23, 2012 at 09:11 AM

Putting to much water on a hot calf that is not regulating temperature can cause temps to drop to the low 90's. Don't over do the water when trying to cool the calf, it has the same results as a over heated calf.

Pennsylvania  |  July, 23, 2012 at 10:42 AM

Shade cloth and electrolytes ( BIO- VET's calf Goldlyte ) fed daily will keep calves healthy in the heat.

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