In today’s cattle industry, producers are looking for immediate answers to strengthen their bottom line. To help meet this need, Merial launched a new website, www.TruthAboutDeworming.com. The first of its kind, this new resource provides a digital deworming tool that will give cattle producers immediate evaluations of their current deworming protocols.
This year’s drought has producers scrutinizing their bottom line and looking for ways to increase productivity. The digital deworming tool evaluates a herd’s parasite load and its impact on overall herd health. The tool is simple and straightforward to use. First, the tool will ask questions such as herd size, pasture turnout plans, region of the country where the cattle are located and products currently used for parasite management. Detailed questions are then asked regarding which products will be used to treat parasites and when those treatments are scheduled.
After inputting this information, the digital deworming tool gets to work. The tool predicts the overall health of a herd as it relates to parasitism. The analysis includes critical parasite load estimates and a corresponding herd health evaluation. This information can be used by the producer to evaluate overall herd productivity and steps that can be taken to improve deworming protocols.
"It’s important for producers to implement a parasite control program that allows for the best body condition, reproductive ability and weaning weights," says Steve Vandeberg, director, endectocide marketing for Merial. "This new tool can help producers evaluate their deworming options by predicting overall herd health. All they have to do is invest a few minutes at a computer to help them establish an effective protocol and then implement the strategy."
According to Vandeberg, the up-front time invested is worth it because not having an effective deworming program can have adverse results for producers. Internal parasites, if left untreated, can negatively impact the immune system1, reduce appetite and nutritional efficiency2, reduce weaning weights3, lower conception rates4, alter carcass composition5 and decrease milk production6.
In fact, of all the animal health practices used to increase production, treating beef cattle for parasites gives producers the greatest economic return.7