The following quiz is being used in Colorado to help cattle producers assess their herd's vulnerability to perisitent infection by the bovine viral diarrhea (BVD) virus. Jim Kennedy, director of the Rocky Ford Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, Rocky Ford, CO, says the quiz might be helpful for producers across the country in a BVD risk assessment. See the story on page 36 for more information on the Colorado BVD-free certification program.

Each question is worth 5 points. “Grade” your operation based on the points based on “yes” answers:

100-95 points — You are probably doing most things necessary to protect your herd from BVD.

90-80 points — You may want to look at certain aspects of your operation to address your herd's vulnerability to BVD.

Less than 80 points — Your herd may be at significant risk to BVD.

Kennedy recommends that after taking this quiz cattle producers work closely with their veterinarians to develop a comprehensive animal health plan.

  1. Do you regularly consult with your veterinarian?

  2. Do you pregnancy check your cows?

  3. Was last year's pregnancy rate greater than 90%?

  4. Was last year's weaning rate greater than 90%?

  5. Did less than 5% of your calves die after weaning?

  6. Do you annually vaccinate all of your cattle for BVD?

  7. Do you record the brand, lot number and expiration date of the vaccines you use?

  8. Do you submit any aborted fetus to your veterinarian for diagnosis?

  9. Has your vet ever diagnosed clinical BVD in your cattle?

  10. Do you routinely have all new additions to your herd tested for BVD?

  11. Do you routinely isolate all new additions for at least 21 days?

  12. Over the past three years, has your calving rate been above 90%?

  13. Do more than 95% of your cows calve within 90 days?

  14. Do you see deer or elk grazing among your cattle less than three times/month?

  15. Do you spend less than $5/animal/year to treat illness (excluding routine vaccinations, dewormers and pour-ons)?

  16. Has your veterinarian informed you of the different types of BVD viruses and their importance in vaccination selection?

  17. Did you treat less than 10% of last year's calf crop for pneumonia or other respiratory disease?

  18. Did you treat less than 10% of last year's calf crop for gastrointestinal disease — scours, bloat, etc.?

  19. Do you maintain production records that individually identify each animal?

  20. Have you monitored weaning weights over the past three years?

(Source: James A. Kennedy, Rocky Ford Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, Rocky Ford, CO; 719/254-6382).