The calves are usually left with their mother (dam) less than 24 hours and then placed on a milk-feeding program. Cal Poly Dairy uses a calf started and milk replacer. The calf starter is a high-energy, high-protein, low-fiber grain mix that is fed to young calves. Therapeutic levels of antibiotic are used to combat scours and other sicknesses. The calf starter used by Cal Poly includes an active drug ingredient to prevent coccidiosis. The calf starter is designed to be fed to calves up to 150 LB of body weight; the ingredients included in the calf starter are listed below. For a list of ingredients in the Medicated Calf Starter click here.
The milk replacer is a high milk byproduct feed sold as a powder and reconstituted with water for feeding (ratio is usually 1 part dry replacer to 6 to 9 parts water). It is highly recommended to purchase the milk replacer because it is much too complex for home mixing. Typical composition includes dried skim milk or whey or both with 10% to 30% animal fat for energy and additives including vitamins, trace minerals, and antibiotic. The protein content is usually between 20% and 24%, as you can see below the milk replacer used by Cal Poly's dairy contains 22% protein. For a complete list of percentages and ingredients in the Calf Milk Replacer click here.
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Information Courtesy of Joseph Dilsaver, Cal Poly Dairy Assistant