The vaccine protects against two primary viral causes of pneumonia in young calves, BRSv and Pi3v. Surveillance of blood samples from 2,145 calves with pneumonia signs found 78% exposed to BRSv, 81% to Pi3v. The product licence allows use from nine days of age, with onset of immunity to BRSv and Pi3v after five and 10 days respectively. The licence also specifies a duration of immunity of 12 weeks.
Zoetis vet Carolyn Hogan advises that viruses are the instigator of a majority of respiratory health problems. “Early-life protection also helps reduce the threat from opportunistic secondary bacterial infections, such as Pasteurella,” she says.
“Good respiratory health is essential to ensure calves develop to achieve their lifetime potential. But it’s estimated that 67% of pneumonia cases occur in calves less than three months of age.
” Whether suckled or reared, calves that don’t grow effectively in the early weeks are unlikely to catch up later. On both dairy and beef units, proactive management of the calf living space, nutrition and disease resilience is critical to maximise lifetime productivity, which is clearly so important under today’s farm business economics.
More information about the benefits of managing respiratory health in calves is available at plantoproduce.co.uk.