Losses from Bovine Viral Diarrhea (BVD)—considered by many to be the most costly virus in cattle--begin with abortions and late pregnancies in the cow-calf herd. BVD also impairs immune function, meaning the virus extends its economic thievery to feedlots and stocker pastures.
There are direct losses and costs associated with clinical infection, but the most costly damage may stem from the reduced gains, feed efficiency and other performance losses associated with subclinical BVD infection. “Remember, we only pull about one calf out of every two that are sick (due to subclinical infections that can’t be seen),” says Brad Williams, DVM, MBA with Elanco Animal Health.
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