Helping your herd to manage cattle heat stress can result in a healthier, more productive herd during summer’s hot weather.
Studies have shown that extreme heat affects cattle’s ability to reproduce, gain weight, and stay healthy. In Florida, extreme heat is the name of the game for multiple months out of the year. While Florida cattle are more acclimated to high temperatures and humidity, there are still steps beef and dairy producers can take to manage cattle heat stress. Explore tips from a BeefMagazine.com article below.
Managing Cattle Heat Stress Tips
According to the article, heat stress costs beef and dairy producers hundreds of millions every year in lost production and low reproduction. Signs that a ruminant is suffering from heat stress include going off feed, labored breathing, panting, increased water intake, decreased activity or sweating, heat stress has already begun to wreak havoc on vital, internal systems.
According to Jessica Fox, veterinarian and director of veterinary services and biosecurity for Ralco quoted in the article, “The impacts producers’ see are only a small portion of what is going on inside a ruminant during an extreme heat event.” Heat stress can cause a host of issues. “Heat stress triggers a cascade of events that impact a bovine’s production ability, make it susceptible to disease and, in extreme circumstances, death,” Fox said in the article.
Tips for mitigating cattle heat stress from the article include:
- Ensuring abundant access to cool, fresh water, as cattle can require double the amount of water they would usually drink.
- Providing shade.
- Providing bedding as the ground can trap heat.
- Offer fresh feed.
Griffin Fertilizer is committed to helping both growers and ranchers make sound agronomic and economic decisions in order to maximize the health of their grove and pasture. As a full-service custom dry & liquid fertilizer blender and crop protection product distributor, we will continue our mission to further advance Florida agriculture. For questions or concerns about your farm or pasture, contact us and one of our team will be in touch.