News From FarmVets SouthWest

December Newsletter

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Newsletter December 2010 Farm Vets South West



When treating for fluke at this time of year in sheep it is vital to use a flukicide that kills all lifecycle stages of fluke.  Triclabendazole is the most common drug used for this purpose.

There is an offer on “Tribex “5 litres, the price is £45 + VAT whilst stocks last, the equivalent drug in the trade shops is £78.75 (Fasinex).


Opening Times Christmas and New Year 2010/2011

                        Bridgwater                               Ilminster          Yarcombe

24th Dec           Open                                        Open                Open

25th Dec           Closed                                     Closed             Closed

26th Dec           Closed                                     Closed             Closed

27th Dec           Open for Drug Collection        Closed             Closed

                        Phone first

28th Dec           Open for Drug Collection        Closed             Closed

                        Phone first

29th Dec           Open                                        Open                Open

30th Dec           Open                                        Open                Open

31st Dec           Open                                        Open                Open

1st Jan              Open for Drug Collection        Closed             Closed

                        Phone first

2nd Jan             Closed                                     Closed             Closed

3rd Jan              Open for Drug Collection        Closed             Closed                        

                        Phone first

4th Jan              Open                                        Open                Open


Staff Changes


It is with deep regret that we say goodbye to Diane this month.  Alas, she is moving on and FVSW wish her all the best in the future and thank her for her excellent work whilst with us.


Some of you have met Cathy at the surgery since she joined the team and you will get to know her better over the next few months.


Another option for Mastitis 


Most of us reach for Tylan or Pen & Strep when confronted with a case of mastitis but Cobactan 2.5% is a broad spectrum antibiotic with action against gram positive and gram negative bacteria.

Give 25mls per day for a 600Kg cow daily for 2 or more days.  It only has a 24 hour milk and a 5 day meat withdrawal. It can be used in conjunction with Cobactan milking cow tubes without increasing the milk withdrawal of the tube.


There is an offer on this month, £30 plus VAT per 100ml bottle. 




Another “Another Option for Mastitis”


A new mastitis vaccine is on the market.  It provides immunity against e.coli and staphs but unfortunately not strep uberis.  It is not a replacement for sensible mastitis control measures but can aid in reduction of clinical mastitis as well as aiding cure rates and decreasing chronic infections


Medicine Availability

Some of you may be aware that some practices are unable to source IBR vaccines or the pneumonia vaccine, Bovipast RSP.  We have a stock of both vaccines available this winter.


Metricure is now available again after the recent manufacturing problems, we will not continue to stock Cevaxel unless requested.





Funds have been made available through the EU to aid training for farmers in the south-west.  The “South West Healthy Livestock Initiative” will pay for 70% of the costs of the training which can be one to one in the case of mastitis or small group training.


There are three main areas:


Dairy   (Johne’s & BVD, lameness and mastitis)

Beef     (Johne’s & BVD, Respiratory disease)

Sheep   (Nutrition, lameness, parasite control and breeding)


We are looking in to this, the sheep part is not up and running yet, but please register an interest with the practice and we will supply some information.



Nutritional Problems in Dairy Herds


Last month we did a nutritional investigation on 5 dairy farms which were experiencing problems.  Symptoms of the problems included scouring cows, poor milk yield, increased cases of mastitis, low feed intake, bloating and death.


These problems were sorted out fairly quickly but have caused havoc in the meantime.  The root of the problem was acidosis.  A tell tale sign of a problem is variable dung consistency with some cows very loose and some cows very stiff.  All cows had poorly digested fibre and grain in their dung.


What is interesting is that only two farms had a poorly formulated diet, others ran into problems with very acidic silage, lack of physically effective fibre and over mixing of the ration. This was not helped by inaccurate silage analysis.


There are lots of things that can increase the incidence of acidosis which are nothing to do with diet formulation.  We are running TMR training days which will cover these points and allow you to get the best out of your cows.  If you think you may have a problem then please talk to one of the vets, not all cows with acidosis have low milk fats so bulk milk fat levels cannot be used to rule out acidosis.