Watch withdrawal times carefully
Bovine respiratory disease can strike at any time. When BRD develops later in the feeding period, producers should pay careful attention to the withdrawal time of the selected antimicrobial treatment--helping keep cattle healthy and operations profitable.
"It is critical that producers pay close attention to withdrawal times for all products and have double-check systems in place to avoid a residue occurrence," says Lee Bob Harper, DVM, managing veterinarian, Feedlot Veterinary Operations with Pfizer Animal Health Cattle and Equine Technical Services. "Residues have the potential to place our food supply at risk and can result in consequences to the producer."
Antimicrobial treatments with shorter withdrawal times are well matched to fight disease later in the feeding period, Harper notes. Shorter withdrawal times give feedlots flexibility if animals are diagnosed with BRD.
"If a 1,200-pound steer is diagnosed with BRD 10 days before scheduled slaughter, it is important to have a product with a withdrawal less than 10 days so that animal will be clear to ship on schedule when recovery occurs," Harper says.
When selecting a product for later in the feeding period, producers should review options with their veterinarian to choose a product that will be effective and is suitable for use in the given timeframe.
Along with selecting the appropriate treatment, accurate record-keeping is critical to confirming cattle have met the appropriate withdrawal time stated on the product label, Harper says.
"Choosing the right product with the help of your veterinarian is half the battle when deciding on late-treatment options," Harper notes. "The final step is accurate record-keeping to confirm withdrawal time indications have been met. Whatever system works best for the operation, record-keeping is an important final step to ensure we are all doing our part to produce safe and wholesome beef."