Many thanks to all for dealing with all the changes in policies that we have had to implement recently to deal with COVID 19. We are saddened by the rapidly increasing number of cases in Grant County (currently at 995) and the 19 deaths. All our policies are designed to continue to protect staff and clients from infection. All of LVC staff has remained healthy and test negative.
Here is a summary of the things we are doing at Lancaster Veterinary Clinic to continue to serve you and your animals safely:
- We provide curbside service for clients to stay in their cars. Please call and let us know when you arrive.
- We are providing doggie daycare and boarding with drop-off at the outdoor dog run gate. We want to help provide daycare for dogs for everyone who is getting back to work or school.
- The drop off and pick up for grooming is at the back door to the garage. Phone information is on the door.
- Staff will be wearing masks when working with clients outside.
- Call for whatever large animal supplies you need. We can drop ship them or take them out to your vehicle or leave them in our back pick up box for you to pick up later.
- All the vets are happy to take your questions and help your animals with information over the phone. Sending pictures of your animal’s problem(s) is helpful.
To protect yourself and your family and reduce viral spread, follow these tips:
- Wash hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water
- Avoid touching your face
- Stay at home
- Practice social distancing and use a mask when you do go out.
- Cover your cough or sneeze
Drive through COVID 19 testing was offered in Platteville last week. Testing is available in Dubuque by appointment at Unity Point Health (563-582-1881) and Epic Health and Wellness (563-582-1000).
New cases of COVID 19 in Grant county reached 2504 on September 25, the highest ever. Two thirds of current cases are among people age 18-27, with most of the county cases located at UW-Platteville. A few cases have occurred at Lancaster schools, but not enough to require virtual only school.
Please continue social distancing and mask wearing when out in public. That is the best defense we have against spreading the virus.
2020 CAT CASTRATION CLINIC
We had a great response to the Facebook notice for registration for this year’s cat castration clinic. We already have as many cats registered as we can handle with COVID requirements, so we have closed the registration. Please call the clinic if you have questions.
Some change for this year:
- Each cat will cost $5 to castrate
- People must register and pay in advance for their cats
- People will be assigned a specific time to bring their cats in
- People will wait for their cats in their cars
- Cats must be in carriers
We are still calling people and setting up the times for cats to come in. We hope that these changes to this annual community service that we have done for over 25 years will work for us and for our clients. If you have a group of cats, please call. We have package deals and discounts for groups of cats done at the same time. We want to help your get your cat castrated!
PLAN NOW FOR BULL TESTING
Sally is ready to do your bull breeding soundness exams with a brand new electro ejaculator that she bought at the recent AABP meeting. This new equipment is the latest portable design and made to easily test even the toughest bulls.
A breeding soundness exam or BSE involves examination of the bull for any physical problems such as bad feet or other injury, palpation of the internal and external genital organs, measurement of scrotal circumference, collection of semen (usually by electro ejaculation). All these procedures can be accomplished on the farm with a chute to restrain the bull and power for the equipment. Concentration and motility of the sperm is checked under the microscope at the farm. A semen sample is also taken back to the clinic and examined for morphology under the dual head microscope. Just because we can see “swimmers” at the farm does not mean that enough of the sperm are normal for the bull to be fertile.
Depending on the number of bulls done at one visit, the cost of a BSE ranges from $30 to $45 per bull. The results of the BSE are recorded after the test. We have forms for individual bulls or groups depending on whether you are selling animals or keeping them for your own use.
Bulls are classified as a potential breeder or needing a retest or as a non-breeder. Sometimes bulls can recover from an injury and test OK on a retest. Yearling bulls may not test OK the first time, but be OK later. The BSE is designed to find the non-breeders before you turn a bull out and find all the cows open this fall. Rarely, a bull will test OK and not be a breeder. A BSE does not test libido or mating ability. We have been finding about 20% of the bulls tested to be non-breeders or needing a retest.
Sally has been finding a few bull problems with fall preg checks this year and poor numbers of pregnancies.
Please call if you have questions or want to schedule a time to check your bulls.
MELOXICAM HELPFUL FOR CASTRATION PAIN
Castration is something that we do routinely to about half the calves we raise. This procedure can be accomplished by knife or band, at birth or later, depending on choice and facilities. Current welfare recommendations are to castrate at less than 2 months of age. Calves recover more quickly and have fewer side effects when done younger.
Meloxicam is an oral NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory) that reduces the long term pain of castration. The dose is one tablet per 30 # body weight for cattle. This dose can be given the day before castrations if you are doing a group of dairy calves or can be given at the time of the procedure. A single oral dose lasts 3 days.
Recent studies have shown no difference in ADG (average daily gain) or weaning weight of treated calves vs untreated calves. These measurements are done far enough out that untreated calves have time to catch up. Treated calves show reduced pain and stress markers at castration time.
NEW 24/7 HOTLINE FOR FARMER MENTAL HEALTH
A new 24/7 counseling hotline hopes to relieve Wisconsin farmers, under added pressure from effects of COVID-19.
888-901-2558 is a free, confidential service by the Farm Center at the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP).
The hotline launched in July-- as part of a pilot program-- is funded by the state biennial budget. It connects farmers with licensed mental health professionals contracted by the department.
The program’s staff explains, “If you’re a farmer who, one, can’t get off the farm, and two, doesn’t have the financial resources or the insurance to cover mental health therapy, now you’ve got an avenue. Now you’ve got someone to talk to who’s going to understand.”