March 2020 Cow/Calf Newsletter

Bear Paw Veterinary Service

Cow/Calf Newsletter

March 2022


  • Multi-min 90 (Injectable mineral complex)
  • Bull preparation…

Multi-min 90 (injectable mineral product): Why & when to use it?

The use of this injectable mineral does not substitute for a herd mineral program, yet I have found that it complements and enhances the health of cattle at key points of production.

  • Sick animals
    • Disease depletes mineral levels rapidly. Sick animals require normal levels to heal and many do not consume enough to provide the immune system requirements.
  • Stressed animals
    • Pre-weaning
    • Pre-breeding in some situations, especially when synchronization is important.
  • When mineral programs falter:
    • Situations were mineral supplementation is not available for a period of time.
    • E.g. grazing Beaver Creek Park or other associations.
    • Salt & Phosphorus inhibit mineral intake… so when pastures and/or water prevents adequate mineral consumption the cattle will go deficient.
    • Sometimes calves at branding benefit – they do not get key mineral via milk so they need to eat the herd mineral by 1 month of age (keep this in mind with how you provide access to mineral)

Bull preparation: Too many bulls fail their Breeding Soundness Exams in the spring. Here are some of the reasons:

  • Nutrition
    • They are skinny.
    • They lack adequate vitamins & minerals to produce satisfactory semen.
    • They develop lameness (cracks, hooks or foot rot). o Young bulls are still growing and usually cannot compete with the mature bulls for feed or require a higher energy and protein ration.
    • The goal is to have them in BCS 6 prior to BSE. With a crest to their neck and a hairless scrotum (testosterone!).
  • Hypothermic semen stress.
    • I suggest not testing less than 65 days past our severe winter temperatures.
    • It takes about 62 days for sperm to develop to maturity and temperature can cause temporary defects that will fail them until resolved.

The important thing is to recognize and manage your bull power. They are special and require specific care to perform this spring… God willing we have grass & water.

Paul W. McCann, DVM.

Bear Paw Veterinary Service

5051 U.S. Highway 2 NW

Havre, MT 59501

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