Respiratory problems are most frequent in autumn and winter, when calves and sheep can develop respiratory problems shortly after housing. Damp, foggy days during the winter and a persistent damp atmosphere in the shed, supports a much higher level of infectious agents than dry air.
The problem is partly created by the sharing of respiratory organisms when groups are mixed. Cattle and sheep, like all animals, carry bacteria in their respiratory passages. These usually cause no harm, but if the immune response is weakened, the opportunity is given for infection to take hold.
The autumn of 2020 has seen wide fluctuations in weather, which has given rise to a significantly larger respiratory challenge than would normally be expected, putting the risk of respiratory related problems in young calves and sheep at the forefront of many farmers minds.
The growing awareness of antimicrobial resistance within agriculture is prompting farmers to look ever more closely at taking preventative steps to create an environment that is less prone to hosting infectious organisms. ESVAC (European Surveillance of Veterinary Antimicrobial Consumption) have revealed that European sales of antibiotics have fallen by 34.6% over the last 10 years and accredit this drop to preventative measures farmers have made, such as improved hygiene practises, enhanced biosecurity measures, incorporation of vaccines and the introduction of nutritional supplementation. Crystalyx Easy Breather is one such supplement that can be incorporated as a preventative aid.
Crystalyx Easy Breather has been specially formulated to help develop and support a strong immune defence system within young animals, giving the livestock a chance to protect themselves against infectious respiratory challenges. Easy Breather allows animals to breathe easily by keeping respiratory passages clear which helps to keep them relaxed. Easy Breather is not intended to be a substitute for good management, but it does provide a powerful, natural aid to help housed animals withstand respiratory challenges.
Stress is also a major factor in the spread of disease because it reduces the immune response. Livestock can become stressed by such factors as weaning, transportation, housing and/or regrouping, competition for insufficient feed, overcrowding and any management change which causes serious disturbance.
Extensive trial work has shown Crystalyx Easy Breather significantly reduces the incidence of coughing and respiratory irritation in housed calves and sheep and allows them to regain their appetite after a stress or challenge. Research by Professor Z M Kowalski of Krakow University in Poland showed that offering Crystalyx Easy Breather to Holstein dairy calves increased growth rates by 8.5% over controls, similar trials conducted in Russia confirmed that feeding Crystalyx Easy Breather to stressed calves improved DLWG by 11.3%.