Posted 2/21/2021 07:43 (#8848006 - in reply to #8847306) Subject: RE: Question for cattle feeders
Well first and foremost I use a Vac 45 protocol for my reasons to protect my investment in my cattle while in my ownership. I also vaccinate at branding time in spring for the same reasons. I then switch to Vac 45 in fall at weaning time. I have to wean calves, there is no way cost effective I can sell off the cows with 3/4ths of my cattle so I'm forced to wean. I will also add there is "NO WAY" I would wean without vaccinating my own calves! I've seen death losses without vaccination, I don't ever want to revisit that again.
I own those calves until they cross the scales. However the bigger picture is I still own that brand that calf is packing all the way to the processing plant. There was a change of ownership of that animal, but it still packs my brand. I'm doing my part to insuring the best quality product I can produce with my inputs so in hopes that cattle feeders will come back and purchase them again so they can make money on my calves. Without the cattle feeder, I'm out of business. You only get one chance to get it right that starts pre-breeding of your cattle and into sale day of your calves across the scales.
It used to be we got a bigger premium for a Vac protocol however it is sliding away in the fact feeders just won't bid on non vacc cattle like they will on pre-vac. There is some top notch feeders that can handle those types of incoming cattle, but they will price them accordingly to the fact they know the risk involved. It's all in risk management, some are better at it.
I've used age and source programs, again it's another risk management tool. Yes they aren't cheap, a little paperwork. But it opens your market up to sell calves. If a person is thinking of using a program you need to be checking them out now before calving time to see what records they want you to keep, then that way when it comes time to enroll cattle you aren't rushed with expedited fees to get things done at the last minute.
All I can comment is my own cattle on a vac program that verify I wean for 45+ days, I've took the big hit on those calves if their was going to be a major problem I should have had it happen while in my possession.
Even the calves that don't make my contracts or I filled contract, that are held over until I have a load to take to commission house will be weaned and have same vac protocol as other calves did. They are the second stringers, but they damn well pack my brand. I know they will be priced accordingly if there is a problem with them. I strive to make that pen of calves the smallest I can.