2. January 2020

How to maintain gut health in calves - easily and rapidly

Generally, diarrhoea is the biggest health challenge in calves, and the main cause of deaths. As soon as you notice calves with diarrhoea, you should take action – and the sooner you stop the situation from worsening, the less the calves will suffer.

Dialyt Express maintains/re-establishes a range of body balances being under pressure due to gastrointestinal issues. The product is designed for immediate action when unbalances in manure are observed.

Therefore, Dialyt Express is a ready-to-use mixture, which should be stored near the calves or on the milk taxi. This makes it easy to respond to issues as soon as they arise. This is contrary to traditional powder products, where you need to mix water and powder far away from where the calves are located.

As opposed to traditional rehydration products, Dialyt Express can be supplemented directly into the milk. Normally, rehydration solutions contain sodium bicarbonate – which stabilises the pH level of the abomasum/intestines.
However, mixing sodium bicarbonate with milk should be avoided because it hinders the coagulation of the milk in the abomasum. Therefore, Dialyt Express is instead buffered with acetate. Acetate does not hinder the digestion of milk and can be fed together with the milk.

Please remember that calves must have access to water between milk feeding.


Avoid delaying treatment with Dialyt Express

Often, rehydration solutions are administered too late. Preventive treatment of fluid and electrolyte balances should be initiated when the calves still show an urge to suck and have an appetite.
Calves already show signs of dehydration with a dehydration level of 6 percent. Severe dehydration and subsequent acidification of the blood has a negative impact on the calves’ ability to recover. Consequently, it is recommended adding Dialyt Express to the drinking water at an early stage.

Practical experience shows that supplementing Dialyt Express improves the health of calves. Also, adding Dialyt Express to the drinking water makes them want to drink more. This might be motivated by the high palatability of the product.

We therefore recommend adding a small amount of Dialyt Express to the drinking water every time the calves are at risk of contracting diarrhoea, e.g. when replacing the calves or around weaning.

Dialyt Express improves the welfare of calves – and the less diarrhoea, the lower the mortality rate.

Per Theilgaard
Per Theilgaard
Product Manager