Monday, November 29, 2010

Antibiotic Care Plan

The day before Thanksgiving was short sleeve seventy degree weather. At the afternoon feeding,our baby calves were kicking up their heels and acting like it was spring. Fifteen hours later when I returned for the morning feeding,the temperature had dropped to twenty-six degrees and windy with a light mist. Extreme temperature changes are very stressful to baby calves and dairy moms. Extreme weather changes create added stress that increases the susceptibility to respiratory illness. When a baby calf is sick, we follow a care plan provided by our veterinarian. Antibiotic medication is given under prescription just like I would give my child. I document treatment for any calf that receives medication. As I think about all the statements being made about the use of antibiotics in animals causing resistance to antibiotics in humans, I am very concerned that our ability to treat and care for our animals will be taken away which will eventually eliminate our ability to maintain herd health. Making sure our animals are healthy and producing a healthy product for consumers is part of sustainability of our farm. As a mother,nurse, farmer and fellow human, I want the most accurate information based on sound scientific evidence when making such serious changes to our food production system. I would also add a dose of common sense !

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