The old saying that it’s not important how you start out, it’s where you end up, may be true in many cases, but it’s definitely not so when it comes to starting calves. The stress that comes with weaning, shipping, grouping and the breeding period can cause a number of production problems, from poor weight gain to illness, and in extreme cases, death. Stress is the number one thief of calf herd profitability. If you can improve the herd’s immune status by reducing stress, you can increase profitability. That’s where a stress-fighting CRYSTALYX® product can make a difference.
A number of research trials have proven that Brigade® Stress Fighting Formula will help fight stress in cattle. Brigade® contains and continuously delivers additional protein, vitamins and minerals. Brigade® is also formulated with electrolytes to make it an especially effective stress fighter. Enhancing immune response is another crucial element in an effective starter calf program, and Brigade® has organic sources of copper, zinc and manganese that get the job done.
Stress can also negatively affect a calf’s appetite. Brigade® has an answer for that challenge as well. Brigade® is highly palatable and contains yeast culture, so it helps stimulate calves’ appetites, helping them to start eating sooner. Field trials demonstrate that offering a highly palatable low moisture block at weaning appears to offer a jump-start to the feed-familiarization process. When fortified, highly palatable supplements are placed in weaning pens, even calves that are naive to supplement experience interest that stimulates acclimation to the bunk. And calves that are eating are less stressed.
Many producers are also seeing a Brigade® benefit in terms of lower health care costs. Reducing the treatment of sick calves, in addition to being cost effective, also makes Brigade® an excellent fit for natural beef programs. The nutritional boost helps lower the number of calves that need to be treated and pulled from the program.