Many factors affect immune system response (Nockels, 1988; Hutcheson, 1990). On the other hand, during disease states trace mineral requirements may be affected by immune system response (Hutcheson, 1990). High concentrations of zinc have been shown to be beneficial to the animal’s health during disease (Chirase et al., 1991), and zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), selenium (Se), and iron (Fe) seem to be necessary for immunocompetence (Chandra and Dayton, 1982; Brandt and Hutcheson, 1987; Drobe and Loerch, 1989; Erskine et al., 1989, 1990).

VITAMINS

Adding B vitamins to receiving rations for stressed calves increased their performance and feed intake in one (Overfield et al., 1976) but not all (Cole et al., 1979, 1982) experiments. Niacin added at 125 ppm seemed to increase average daily gain by healthy calves (Hutcheson and Cummins, 1984); however, diseased calves receiving niacin at 250 ppm seemed to have the best average daily gain. The most significant gains were observed when the cattle received 271 mg/cwt/day (Hutcheson and Cummins, 1984).

Vitamin E has been shown to be involved in immune system response; lymphocyte-stimulation indices were highest for calves fed 227.5 mg (250 IU) all-rac-a-tocopherol compared to controls (Cipriano et al., 1982). Increasing vitamin E intake during disease or infection produced varying results, but in general the data indicate that vitamin E is necessary for optimal functioning of the immune system. Vitamin E fed at 400 IU/day in receiving and starting diets of newly arrived feeder calves decreased disease and number of sick days and increased gain (Hicks, 1985).

TABLE 8–2 Suggested Nutrient Concentrations for Stressed Calves (dry matter basis)

Nutrient

Unit

Suggested Range

Unit/day

Daily Nutrient Intake for 250-kg Calfa

0–7 days

0–14 days

Dry matter

%

80.0–85.0

kg

3.88

4.75

Crude protein

%

12.5–14.5

kg

0.48–0.56

0.59–0.69

Net energy of maintenance

Mcal/kg

1.3–1.6

Mcal

4.84

4.84

Net energy of gain

Mcal/kg

0.8–0.9

Mcal

0.01–0.8

0.6–1.6

Calcium

%

0.6–0.8

g

23.0–31.0

29.0–38.0

Phosphorus

%

0.4–0.5

g

16.0–19.0

19.0–24.0

Potassium

%

1.2–1.4

g

47.0–54.0

57.0–67.0

Magnesium

%

0.2–0.3

g

8.0–12.0

10.0–14.0

Sodium

%

0.2–0.3

g

8.0–12.0

10.0–14.0

Copper

mg/kg

10.0–15.0

mg

39–58

47–71

Iron

mg/kg

100.0–200.0

mg

388–775

475–950

Manganese

mg/kg

40.0–70.0

mg

155–271

190–332

Zinc

mg/kg

75.0–100.0

mg

290–387

356–475

Cobalt

mg/kg

0.1–0.2

mg

0.4–0.8

0.5–1.0

Selenium

mg/kg

0.1–0.2

mg

0.4–0.8

0.5–1.0

Iodine

mg/kg

0.3–0.6

mg

1.2–2.3

1.4–2.9

Vitamin A

IU/kg

4,000.0–6,000.0

IU

15,500.0–23,250.0

19,000.0–28,500.0

Vitamin E

IU/kg

75–100

IU

291–388

356–475

aIntake levels are based on 1.55% for days 0 through 7 and 1.90% for days 0 through 14 from Table 8–1.

Vitamin E fed at 450 IU/day to cattle that experienced more than 10 percent shrink increased gain (Lee et al., 1985). Vitamin E should be fed between 400 and 500 IU per head per day during the receiving and starting period. Calves receiving 125 mg/day (125 IU/day) of all-rac-a-tocopherol acetate consumed more than calves that did not receive additional vitamin E or 500 mg/day (500 IU/day) (Reddy et al., 1985).

Table 8–2 gives the suggested nutrient concentrations for receiving diets of stressed cattle. Many of the nutrients are based on the subcommittee’s calculations; some are based on published data (Hutcheson, 1990). Decreased intake during disease stress is the single most common observation. Nutrient amounts recommended in Table 8–2 are for the first 2 weeks after arrival or until the cattle are consuming feed, on a dry matter basis, of 2 percent of body weight or more. Table 8–2 also gives nutrient amounts that would be consumed per day when suggested amounts are calculated: 1.55 percent of body weight, the average amount of feed consumed during the first week; and 1.90 percent of body weight, the average amount of feed consumed during the first 2 weeks—that is, the average of the 2 weeks.

REFERENCES

Addis, D.G., G.P.Lofgreen, J.G.Clark, J.R.Dunbar, and C.Adams. 1975. Barley vs milo in receiving rations. Calif. Feeders Day Kept. 14:53.

Addis, D.G., G.P.Lofgreen, J.G.Clark, C.Adams, F.Prigge, J.R.Dunbar, and B.Norman. 1978. Barley vs wheat in receiving rations for new calves. Calif. Feeders Day Rept. 17:54.



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