Failure of precalving supplementation of vitamin E and dietary fat to alter reproductive performance of first lactation cows or the health of their calves

Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station Research Reports, Dec 1997

A study was conducted to determine the effect of precalving supplementation with vitamin E and fat on the reproductive performance of first lactation cows and the health of their calves. Approximately 50 days before the first expected calving, 48 crossbred heifers were allotted to four treatments: 1) basal diet that consisted of 13 lb of prairie hay, 7.3 lb of milo, and 1 lb of supplement per heifer per day; 2) basal diet+supplement bringing the diet to 4% fat; 3) basal diet+supplement providing 1000 IU supplemental vitamin E/day; and 4) basal diet plus both fat and vitamin E. Supplementation of vitamin E and(or) fat had no effect on any reproductive trait in the cows or any immunological measurement in the calves.

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Failure of precalving supplementation of vitamin E and dietary fat to alter reproductive performance of first lactation cows or the health of their calves

Failure of precalving supplementation of vitamin E and dietar y fat to alter reproductive performance of first lactation cows or the health of their calves J.L. Coalson 0 L.R. Corah 0 Gerald L. Stokka 0 Part of the Other Animal Sciences Commons 0 0 (Key Words: Vitamin E , Fat, Reproduction, Calf Health.) Follow this and additional works at: http://newprairiepress.org/kaesrr Recommended Citation Coalson, J.L.; Corah, L.R.; Stokka, Gerald L.; and Blecha, Frank (1997) "Failure of precalving supplementation of vitamin E and dietary fat to alter reproductive performance of first lactation cows or the health of their calves," Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station Research Reports: Vol. 0: Iss. 1. https://doi.org/10.4148/2378-5977.1951 - Thi s report is brought to you for free and open access by New Prairie Press. It has been accepted for inclusion in Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station Research Reports by an authorized administrator of New Prairie Press. Copyright 1997 Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service. Contents of this publication may be freely reproduced for educational purposes. All other rights reserved. Brand names appearing in this publication are for product identification purposes only. K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer. Failure of precalving supplementation of vitamin E and dietary fat to alter reproductive performance of first lactation cows or the health of their calves Abstract A study was conducted to determine the effect of precalving supplementation with vitamin E and fat on the reproductive performance of first lactation cows and the health of their calves. Approximately 50 days before the first expected calving, 48 crossbred heifers were allotted to four treatments: 1) basal diet that consisted of 13 lb of prairie hay, 7.3 lb of milo, and 1 lb of supplement per heifer per day; 2) basal diet+supplement bringing the diet to 4% fat; 3) basal diet+supplement providing 1000 IU supplemental vitamin E/day; and 4) basal diet plus both fat and vitamin E. Supplementation of vitamin E and(or) fat had no effect on any reproductive trait in the cows or any immunological measurement in the calves. Creative Commons License Thi s work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. Thi s Research Report article is available in Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station Research Reports: http://newprairiepress.org/ kaesrr/vol0/iss1/548 FAILURE OF PRECALVING SUPPLEMENTATION OF VITAMIN E AND DIETARY FAT TO ALTER REPRODUCTIVE PERFORMANCE OF FIRST LACTATION COWS OR THE HEALTH OF THEIR CALVES Summary A study was conducted to determine the effect of precalving supplementation with vitamin E and fat on the reproductive performance of first lactation cows and the health of their calv es. Approximately 50 days before the first expected calving, 48 cro ssbred heifers were allotte d to four treatments: 1) basal diet that consiste d of 13 lb of prairie hay, 7.3 lb of milo, and 1 lb of supplement per heifer per day; 2) basal diet+supplement bringing the diet to 4% fat; 3) basal diet+supplement providing 1000 IU supplementa l vitamin E/day; and 4) basal diet plus both fat and vitamin E. Supplementation of vitamin E and(or) fat had no effect on any reproductiv e trait in the cows or any immunological measurement in the calves. Introduction Previou s research has shown vitamin E suppl ementatio n (500 to 1000 IU per cow per day) before calving t oimprove the reproductive performanc e of dairy cows and reduce the incidenc e of conditions such as mastitis and udder edema. T his benefit is apparently related to vitam in E's function as an antioxidant and its ability to prevent lipid peroxidation of membranes. Information is limited on the precalving use of vitamin Esupplementation in beef cattle. An Alberta researcher reported a significant red uction in the incidence of calf scours in heifer s receiving 100 0 IU of vitamin E per day for 60 to 100 days prior to calving. 1Department of Anatomy and Physiology. The objective of our experiment was to examin e the effect of precalving supplementatio n of vitamin E with or without 4% total dietary fat on reproductive traits of first-lactation beef cows and immunological measurements on their calves. Experimental Procedures Approximatel y 50 days before the first expecte d calving, 48 crossbred beef heifers were allotte d randomly to four treatments: 1) a basal diet consisting of 13 lb of prairie hay and 7.3 lb of grain sorghum, plus 1 lb of a basic supplement per day ( control); 2) basal diet+1 lb of a supplement to bring the diet to 4% fat; 3) basal diet+ 1 lb of a supplement providing 1000 IU of supplemental vitamin E; and 4) basal diet+both fat and vitamin E. The basic supplement (c ontrol) consisted of 72% soybean meal, 27% gr ain sorghum, and 1% trace mineral premix. In the suppleme nt containing the fat, grain sorghu m was reduced to accommodate 24% added fat. In the supplemen tcontaining vitamin E, the grain sorghum was reduced to accommodate 3.6% of a vitamin E supplement. The fat was Fat Plus® (100% dry animal fat product; Farmland Industries, Inc.). Withi n each treatment, pregnant heifers were allotted to replicates based on weight and expected calving date, resulting in heavy, average, and light weight replicates (n=4) . Heifers were maintained as replicates until approximatel y 14 to 16 days before their expected calvi ng date, when they were transferred to a calving unit and continuously maintained on their respective dietary regimen until 48 h after calving. Heifers were weighed at the onset of dietar y treatments, precalving, and 36 to 40 hours after calving. Body co ndition scores were assesse d at the beginning of the trial and just before calving. To determine plasma concentrations of vitam in E and selenium in the dams and their calves , blood was collected at the beginning of the trial, precalving, and 36 to 40 hours after calving. Colostrum samples were collected from each dam at 36 to 40 hours postcalving, and colostral concentration of immunoglobulin (IgG) was determined by t he use of single radial immunodiffusio n plates c ontaining monospecifi c antisera in buffere d agarose. To deter mine the calf IgG status, blood was collected from the calves at calving, before suckling, and 36 to 40 hours later. Beginnin g 44 days after the first calving, weekl y blood samples wer e collected from the cows and later analyzed for progesterone to determine first occurren ce of postpartum ovulation and luteal function. When serum progesterone exceeded 1 ng/ml in two consecutive samples, onset o festrous was presumed. Cows were exposed to a bull for nat ural mating during a 60-d breeding season. Results and Discussion Supplemental vitamin E and(or) fat had no effect on body weights, body condition score, rate of fetal membrane expulsion, interval to first ovulation, or pregnancy rates at the end of the breeding season (Table 2). Neithe r fat nor vitamin E supplementation had any impact on the immunoglobulin concentration in ca lves, calf vigor, or their weaning weight (Table 2). Item Dry matter, % Crude protein, % Selenium, mg/kg Vit. Eg, IU/kg Fath, % Prairieb Hay 90.2 6.2 .10 112 1.9 Sorghumc 86.7 10.4 10.0 3.2 .14 Soybean Meald,e,f 88.6 47.8 .72 3.0 .73 Total Diet 88.5 9.6 .3 3.1 125 aResults are expressed on a dry matter basis. bPrairie hay and sorghum fed at the rate of 13 lb and 7.3 lb per heifer per day, respectively. cSoybean meal fed as part of supplement, suppleme tnfed at the rate of l lb per heifer per day. Basic supplement (control) consisted of: 72% SBM; 27% sorghum; 1.0% Z 10 mineral mix; and .004% Se premix. dVita min E treatment received the basic supplement with the following changes: sorghum was reduced to accommodate vitamin E premix providing 1000 IU daily eFat trea tment received the basic supplement with the following changes: sorghum was reduced to accommodate 24% fat. fVitamin E+fat received the basic supplem net modified to contain 24% fat and 1000 IU/day vitamin E by removing sorghum. gdl-%-tocopheryl acetate. hFat Plus™ 100 (100% dry animal fat product). Effect of Maternal Treatment on Dam and Calf Weigh ts, Reproductive Traits, Colostral Vitamin E, and Immune Status of the Neonatal Calves Control Vit E Vit E+Fat 62.0 247.0 33.0 28.0 Calf vigor 1st nurse, min 1st stand, min aBody condition score reported on a 1-8 scale (1=extremely thin; 5=moderate; 8=obese). bPassive transfer: poor/low <800 mg/100 ml; moderate 800-1600 mg/100 ml; excellent >1600 mg/100 ml.


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J.L. Coalson, L.R. Corah, Gerald L. Stokka, Frank Blecha. Failure of precalving supplementation of vitamin E and dietary fat to alter reproductive performance of first lactation cows or the health of their calves, Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station Research Reports, 1997,