Quantifying the relationship between calving ease and physiological indicators of trauma in beef calves
Keywords:survival, birthing, assisted birth, calving ease, trauma
Calf survival is crucial to successful cow-calf operations. One major factor that impacts calf health and survival is the amount of difficulty experienced during the birthing process. Assisted calves are often born weak, which can interfere with normal neonatal behaviors such as ingesting colostrum, leading to failed transfer of passive immunity and increased morbidity and mortality before weaning. Few studies have quantified physiological indicators of trauma in calves assisted at birth, nor have the effects of trauma on passive immunity been thoroughly assessed. The objective of this study is to quantify the associations of calving ease, calf vigour, and birth L-lactate, with trauma biomarkers and passive immunity in newborn beef calves.