Kansas State University veterinarian Gregg Hanzlicek is urging cattle producers to review their herd’s vaccination and parasite control program as summer approaches. He said vaccinations should be given to protect cows and bulls against all major reproductive infectious diseases before breeding season, including infectious bovine rhinotracheitis, bovine viral diarrhea, leptospirosis and campylobacter. These vaccinations should be given 45 to 60 days before the bulls will be released with the cows.
In addition, Hanzlicek recommends insecticidal ear tags to control flies this summer. He said cows and bulls both should be tagged with two tags per animal and the type of insecticide used should be rotated periodically.
“If we continue to use products that have the same chemistry or insecticide, we breed for resistance,” Hanzlicek said. “Either a two- or three-year rotation is ideal, depending on the insecticides used.”
Insecticidal ear tags should be removed and disposed of at the end of pasture season, as this also will help prevent resistance in fly populations. For more information on preparing cattle for summer, contact the local extension office.