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Study on the efficiency of non-antibiotic intrauterine bolus in dairy cattle herds
Kiss József - year 6
University of Veterinary Medicine Budapest, Department of Reproduction
Supervisor: Dr. Ottó Szenci

Abstract:

It is generally accepted in dairy farms around the world that retained foetal membranes are treated with either locally administered antibiotic-containing intrauterine boluses or intramuscular antibiotics. As a close link between the use of antibiotics in animal production and the increasing antimicrobial resistance in both veterinary and human medicine is suspected, there is a growing focus on the developments of innovative alternative treatments that allow the treatment of certain disorders such as retained foetal membranes without the use of antibiotics.

Our study investigated whether an antibiotic-containing intrauterine bolus could be substituted by its herbal alternative (Uraksha, Ayurvet Ltd, India) for the treatment of postpartum retained foetal membranes in dairy cattle. In particular, how the treatments affect the re-conception of cows.

Data from 164 cattle from two dairy cattle farms were evaluated. The cattle were divided into a control group of 124 healthy animals (K-group) and a group of 40 cattle diagnosed with retained foetal membranes and treated with herbal uterine bolus (U-group). Our conclusions are based on the date of calving, the time of foetal membranes expulsion, the date and number of artificial inseminations and calving intervals.

On average, the foetal membranes were expelled within 0.82 days in the K-group and 2.78 days in the U-group, respectively, meaning that on average they were expelled 1.96 days later in the U-group (P<0.001). Besides these, the length of the service period, the number of artificial inseminations and calving interval were also examined. Based on the above observations, the treated U-group reached results similar to those of the healthy K-group.

All these results suggest that the herbal intrauterine bolus shows encouraging results and may be an alternative option in the light of increasing antibiotic resistance. It can be used to reduce antibiotic usage without any notable side effects and without the need for a withdrawal period. However, in those farms where antibiotic-containing intrauterine tablets are still used to treat retained foetal membranes, it would be useful to compare the data with those of animals treated with herbal boluses to see whether one or the other treatment is more effective, if the results from our data are not convincing.



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