Monday, November 12, 2018

Aluminum-based aerosol bandages for 
Disbudded Calves

I asked one of vet tech's in our practice about using aluminum-based bandages when disbudding calves. "How long have we been doing this?" She said, "Forever."

Well, "forever" is a rather long time. In practical terms, she could not remember not spraying the aluminum-based product on calves after disbudding - that's probably close to a decade. 

I asked her why we do this. She said, "They heal better." How is that for an endorsement for a practice?

Well, now an enterprising group at Colorado State University actually measured "they heal better."

In scientific terms, when calves that received the  AL spray were compared to calves that received no spray they found:

1. AL-treated calves by 3 weeks post-disbudding had smaller wounds.
2. AL-treated calves were less likely to have delayed healing.

So, now we know with scientifically-valid facts that our vet practice protocol for disbudding calves that includes AL-based spray bandage improves healing. Good for us. 

Reference: Huebner, K.L. and Others, " Evaluation of horn bud wound healing following cautery disbudding of preweaned dairy calves treated with aluminum-based aerosol bandage." Journal of Dairy Science 100:3922-3929 2017

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