25 December 1998

Diarrhoea alert

CUT-BACKS on preventive healthcare means acute diarrhoea in calves is common this year.

Edinburgh Vet Schools Colin Penny says rotavirus scour is more evident this year in young calves up to 14-days-old. Some vets suggest lack of vaccination and damp, warm conditions are to blame.

"Bacteria carried by cows means calves are susceptible to the disease," explains Mr Penny.

"Because scouring is so severe, calves dehydrate and mortality rates can be high. They need to receive large amounts of liquid to recover, either by stomach tube or in severe cases, intravenously." &#42