Prevent your calves from heat stress!
When the temperatures outside rises, heat stress is lurking around the corner.
Heath stress occurs when calves can’t regulate their body temperature due to high temperatures and a high humidity. This can be recognized by fast breathing, panting, lying down more than usual, reduced feed intake and increased water intake.
This will have a negative effect on the growth and even more important, the immune system of your calves.
Some tips to prevent you calves from heat stress:
• Place the calf hutches in the shade as much as possible; did you know that the temperature within the hutch may rise up to 50°C when placed in the sun?
• Try to maximize the ventilation as much as possible. For instance by placing some temporary fans into your stable
• Make sure all calves, even the youngest ones, have access to clean, fresh water
• Offer your calves an extra feeding of electrolyte in between the regular milk feeding moments
• Try to avoid stressful procedures such as sorting, dehorning or introducing calves into new groups at the hottest time of the day. Plan these activities for the cool of the early in the morning or late evening
• Also feed is more likely to decay faster under warm conditions. Accept the residues and provide a fresh ration
• Clip the back of the calves from the withers down to the tail; a couple of widths of the clippers each side of the back bone will seriously help the calf to lose some heat