In today’s cattle industry, producers are looking for immediate answers to strengthen their bottom line. To help meet this need, Merial launched a new website, www.TruthAboutDeworming.com. The first of its kind, this new resource provides a digital deworming tool that will give cattle producers immediate evaluations of their current deworming protocols.
This year’s drought has producers scrutinizing their bottom line and looking for ways to increase productivity. The digital deworming tool evaluates a herd’s parasite load and its impact on overall herd health. The tool is simple and straightforward to use. First, the tool will ask questions such as herd size, pasture turnout plans, region of the country where the cattle are located and products currently used for parasite management. Detailed questions are then asked regarding which products will be used to treat parasites and when those treatments are scheduled.
After inputting this information, the digital deworming tool gets to work. The tool predicts the overall health of a herd as it relates to parasitism. The analysis includes critical parasite load estimates and a corresponding herd health evaluation. This information can be used by the producer to evaluate overall herd productivity and steps that can be taken to improve deworming protocols.
“It’s important for producers to implement a parasite control program that allows for the best body condition, reproductive ability and weaning weights,” says Steve Vandeberg, director, endectocide marketing for Merial. “This new tool can help producers evaluate their deworming options by predicting overall herd health. All they have to do is invest a few minutes at a computer to help them establish an effective protocol and then implement the strategy.”
According to Vandeberg, the up-front time invested is worth it because not having an effective deworming program can have adverse results for producers. Internal parasites, if left untreated, can negatively impact the immune system¹, reduce appetite and nutritional efficiency², reduce weaning weights³, lower conception rates4, alter carcass composition5 and decrease milk production6.
In fact, of all the animal health practices used to increase production, treating beef cattle for parasites gives producers the greatest economic return.7
Besides the digital deworming tool, the site also features information about the impact of parasites, the type of parasites commonly found in beef and dairy herds, and common deworming misconceptions.
“We know how difficult it can be for producers to have profitable operations,” says Vandeberg. “At Merial, we think it’s important to provide the tools producers need to educate themselves about parasite control. This new website is just one more way for producers to learn about current deworming strategies and develop plans that will work in their unique situations.”
To learn more, visit www.TruthAboutDeworming.com. The Digital Dewormer is a simulation. Actual results may vary.
Merial is a world-leading, innovation-driven animal health company, providing a comprehensive range of products to enhance the health, well-being and performance of a wide range of animals. Merial employs approximately 5,600 people and operates in more than 150 countries worldwide. Its 2011 sales were more than $2.8 billion. Merial is a Sanofi Company. For more information, please see www.merial.com.
¹ Wiggins CJ, Gibbs HC. Studies of the immunomodulatory effects of low-level infection with Ostertagia ostertagi in calves. Am J Vet Res. 1989;50(10):1764-1770.
² Stromberg BE, Gasbarre LC. Gastrointestinal nematode control programs with an emphasis on cattle. Vet Clin Food Anim. 2006;22:543-565.
³ Wohlgemuth K, Melancon JJ. Relationships between weaning weights of North Dakota beef calves and treatment of their dams with ivermectin. Agri-Practice. 1988;9:23-26.
4 McPherson WB, Sacek B, Familton A, Gogolewski RP, Ryan WG, Gross SJ. The impact of eprinomectin treatment on dairy cattle reproductive performance in: Proceedings, 44th Annual Meeting American Association of Veterinarian Parasitologists. 1999:41:581-587.
5 Mills B. Beware of internal thieves. Angus Journal. 2001;140.
6 Sanchez J, Dohoo I, Carrier J, DesCoteaux L. A meta-analysis of the milk-production response after anthelmintic treatment in naturally infected adult dairy cows. Prev Vet Med. 2004;63:237-256.
7Lawrence JD, Ibarbura MA. Economic analysis of pharmaceutical technologies in modern beef production in a bioeconomy era. Iowa State University. 2009. Available at http://www.econ.iastate.edu/faculty/lawrence/Pharma%202007%20update.pdf Accessed June 20, 2012.