Calendar of activities for cattle management

By Vikaspedia on 18 Jan 2017

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http://vikaspedia.in
  • Heavy snowfall in Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh during this month results in cold breeze and frost in northern India. It is imperative that all necessary steps be taken to protect livestock from this inclement weather.
  • In case of the occurrence of frost, make adequate arrangements for artificial lighting and heating.
  • Weak and sick animals should be covered with sack cloth to protect them from the cold. At the same time, during the night, all the animals should be tethered in a covered shelter.
  • Avoid keeping animals in a damp area, as well as protect them from smoke from fires which are lit to provide warmth. The dampness and smoke increases their chances of contracting pneumonia.
  • Animals should be given lukewarm feed and water to drink.
  • To maintain the body temperature of animals in milk, they should be fed with a mixture of oil cakes and jaggery.
  • It is important to start collecting and storing fodder at this time.
  • To ensure that essential salts are maintained in the animals, provide salt mixtures in adequate quantities along with their feed.
  • This is the right time to deworm the animals.
  • To protect the animals from ecto-parasites, their sheds should be kept clean. Bouquets of Nirgundi (Vitex negundo), Basil (Ocimum sanctum) or Lemon Grass (Cymbopogon citrates ) should be hung in the animal sheds, the smell of which keeps ecto-parasites away. To keep the sheds clean, a Neem oil based disinfectant can be sprayed.
  • If the animals have not yet been vaccinated against FMD, PPR, Haemorrhagic Septicaemia, Enterotoxemia, Black Quarter etc, ensure that this is done now. Lambs and kids in particular should be given the vaccination to prevent Enterotoxemia.
  • Irrigation of fodder crops of Alfalfa (Medicago sativa, also called Lucerne) and Berseem Clover (Trifolium alexandrinum) should be carried out every 20 – 30 days and for the oat crop every 20 – 22 days.

  • During this month there is rainfall in a number of places. Adequate measures should be taken to protect the animals from the wet weather, as well as the drop in temperature when the skies clear after the rain.
  • All suggestions provided during the last month for protection of the animals against cold and inclement weather may be practiced this month too.
  • The controlled breeding programme for animals should continue in the month of February so that all participating animals become pregnant during this month.
  • All new-born animals should be dewormed.
  • Lambs/kids should be vaccinated against PPR.
  • To prevent Mastitis in dairy cattle, they should be milked completely.
  • Fodder crops of Alfalfa and Berseem Clover as we ll as Oats should be irrigated every 12 – 14 and 18– 20 days respectively.
  • Berseem Clover and Alfalfa should be dried and stored as dry fodder or converted into silage for use during times of low or no green fodder availability.
  • In this month care needs to be taken to prevent diseases caused by hot weather.
  • If mosquitos, flies, ticks etc. are increasing, due care needs to be taken to prevent spread of diseases caused by them.
  • Animals are prone to sterility and Johne’s disease during this time. They should be provided immediate treatment for these.
  • If there is a decrease in milk production, the milk and urine of the animal must be sent for testing by a veterinarian.
  • Fodder crops of Alfalfa and Berseem Clover as well as Oats should be irrigated every 10 and 12 – 14 days respectively.
  • In the summer season, Maize, Bajra and Jowar should be sown for use as green fodder.
  • Perennial fodder grasses such as Hybrid Napier and Guinea grass may be transplanted into prepared fields.
  • Preparation of silage from available green fodder should be carried out.
  • To prevent Puerperal Fever in Pregnant animals, 50 – 60 grams of mineral mixture should be fed to them every day to boost their immunity.
  • This month is characterised by high temperatures, the resultant effects of which on animals is dehydration, a decrease in body salts and appetite, a drop in production etc. It is, therefore, imperative to protect the animals from these high temperatures.
  • Draught animals should be allowed to rest in a shaded and airy spot during the afternoon till about four ‘o clock in the evening.
  • Due attention should be given to arrangements for provision of water to animals. The drinking troughs should be kept clean and animals should be provided water at least four times during the day.
  • Some male animals get agitated due to the heat, effects of which are more visible during the night time. Livestock rearers should be cognizant and take care of this.
  • Look for signs of Mastitis in dairy cattle and treat for it immediately.
  • Lambs should be vaccinated against Enterotoxemia and Sheep Pox.
  • Pregnant animals (more than 6 months) should be given additional feed.
  • During this month the availability of fodder in the pastures is less and general animal nutrition remains low till the onset of monsoons.  At such a time, there is a decrease in body salts, especially phosphorus, which results in a disease called ‘Pica’ (depraved appetite) in animals. It is, therefore, essential to mix salt solution in the mineral blocks fed to the animals.
  • Through community effort, ensure that carcasses of dead animals are not discarded on the regular grazing routes of the animals.
  • Such areas should be cordoned off so that the remains of dead animals are not ingested by the live animals, which can result in Botulism which is untreatable and results in the death of the animal.
  • Maize, Bajra and Jowar sown as fodder crops may be harvested after 45-50 days.
  • Temperatures are high during this month and some areas experience severs dust storms accompanied by thunder showers.
  • Heat related diseases in animals that can be seen to affect animals during this time are fever, dehydration, decrease in body salts, loss of appetite and decrease in productivity.
  • Animals should be protected from the heat and strong, hot and dry summer afternoon winds (loo).
  • Adequate efforts should be made for fodder collection/purchase and storage for periods of shortage.
  • To avoid loss of essential body salts in animals ensure that a salt mixture in appropriate quantity is mixed with the feed and water and given to animals.
  • Depending upon the season, the content of the animal feedshould be changed. At this time increase the quantity of wheat chaff and Jowar in the feed.
  • Give dairy animals a balanced feed so that their milk production capacity is enhanced.
  • Deworming of animals should be carried out.
  • Maize, perennial grasses and other fodder species should be harvested now.
  • Sheep should be sheared during this month.
  • Temperatures are high during this month and some areas experience severs dust storms accompanied by thunder showers.
  • Heat related diseases in animals that can be seen to affect animals during this time are fever, dehydration, decrease in body salts, loss of appetite and decrease in productivity.
  • Animals should be protected from the heat and strong, hot and dry summer afternoon winds (loo).
  • Adequate efforts should be made for fodder collection/purchase and storage for periods of shortage.
  • To avoid loss of essential body salts in animals ensure that a salt mixture in appropriate quantity is mixed with the feed and water and given to animals.
  • Depending upon the season, the content of the animal feed should be changed. At this time increase the quantity of wheat chaff and Jowar in the feed.
  • Give dairy animals a balanced feed so that their milk production capacity is enhanced.
  • Deworming of animals should be carried out.
  • Maize, perennial grasses and other fodder species should be harvested now.
  • Sheep should be sheared during this month.
  • The month of July witnesses the onset of the monsoon season and in some areas there are dust storms accompanied with rain. At such times the animals should be protected against illness caused due to the heat and damp weather.
  • Make adequate arrangements to protect the animals from slush and floods.
  • Protect the animals from diseases caused due to excessive rainy conditions and remember to de-worm them at this time.
  • If the animals have not yet been vaccinated against FMD, Haemorrhagic Septicaemia, Black Quarter, Enterotoxemia etc., this must be done at this time. Adult sheep and goat must be vaccinated against Enterotoxemia.
  • After the birth of the calf/kid/lamb, the new born must be fed with colostrum within the first two hours.
  • Animals in milk are susceptible to getting ‘Milk Fever’ 7-8 days after giving birth. To protect the animal from this disease, they should get adequate exposure to sunlight during pregnancy. Also, in the last month of pregnancy, the animal should be given injections of Vitamin E and Selenium, to protect them from problems which may occur at the time of giving birth such as placenta not falling out. Alternatively, 5 – 10 grams of lime or 70 – 100 ml of a mixture of calcium and phosphorus can be given to the animals daily.
  • Do not let animals graze in irrigated fodder fields, since after the long summer, the sudden growth in the fodder due to the onset of monsoons, leads to the presence of poisonous cyanide in it.  This is especially so in the Jowar crop. These fodder crops should, therefore, not be harvested before time or fed to animals.
  • Perennial fodder grasses should be transplanted at this time and shall be ready for cutting in 40 – 50 days. For a balanced animal feed, maize, Jowar and bajra should be sown along with cluster beans and black-eyed peas.
  • 21 days after shearing sheep, their bodies should be drenched with disinfectant.
  • Make appropriate arrangements to protect animals from exposure to sun and excessive heat.
  • Vaccinate the animals against FMD, Haemorrhagic Septicaemia, Black Quarter, Enterotoxemia etc., if not already done so.
  • Animals afflicted by FMD should be kept in a separate enclosure so that they do not infect the healthy ones. If FMD is prevalent in the area, do not let your animals come in contact with the infected ones.
  • Calves should not be allowed to drink milk from mothers afflicted by FMD, as this can affect their hearts and lead to death.
  • The mouth, hooves and udders of diseased animals must be cleaned with a 1% solution of Potassium Permanganate.
  • If symptoms of Haemorrhagic Septicaemia or Black Quarter are seen in animals, contact the veterinarian immediately.
  • Carcasses of dead animals must be removed from grazing areas to prevent the spread of Botulism.
  • Goat and sheep are prone to getting PPR, Sheep/Goat Pox and Enterotoxemia, at this time. Vaccinate them against these diseases.
  • Animals must be dewormed, using the correct dose of medicines, after due consultation from the veterinarian / animal health worker.
  • To protect animals from ecto-parasites, contact the veterinarian / animal health worker for the appropriate medicine. Keep the shed/area where animals are kept, clean. Bouquets of Nirgundi, Basil or Lemon grass may be hung up in the animal shed, the scent of which keeps the ecto-parasites away. Alternatively, a lemon oil based disinfectant may also be used to keep the sheds clean.
  • Ensure that the animal sheds remain dry during the monsoon season. To keep flies away spray Nilgiri or Lemon grass oil in the shed.
  • Give the animals 30 – 50 grams of mineral mixture along with their feed on a daily basis. This increases milk productivity and enhances the animal’s immunity.

  • A good monsoon leads to flooding in animal sheds and the occurrence of moisture-borne diseases, hence, make adequate arrangements for water drainage and keeping the sheds dry.
  • As much as possible, keep the animals in dry and high (raised platform) places.
  • Ensure that fodder storage areas are kept dry.
  • Due care should be taken to keep grazing pastures clean. The floor and walls of sheds should be cleaned and coated with lime solution.
  • Protect the animals from the rise and fall of temperatures.
  • To protect the in-milk animals from contracting Milk Fever, follow the directions given in the month of July.
  • Protect the animals from parasites. Lambs should be vaccinated against Enterotoxemia.
  • Cows should be mated within 12 – 18 hours of their coming on heat.
  • A lot of green fodder is available at this time, hence, to protect animals from problems associated with excess grazing, restrict the time that they spend in pastures. Mix essential salts in the feed of the animals.
  • Prepare silage from the abundantly available green fodder. Also green fodder can be mixed with dry grasses and fed to the animals.
  • Cutting of sown perennial grasses should be done regularly. The field should be treated with required fertilisers, manure and compost, from time to time.
  • Sowing of Berseem (Trifolium alexandrinum) and Alfalfa should start in the last week of this month.
  • Sheep should be sheared during this month.
  • There is a change in the weather from this month onwards, hence, due arrangements should be made to protect the animals from the onset of the winter.
  • If sheep have not yet been sheared, this activity must be carried out during this month.
  • The affected areas of animals afflicted with FMD should be cleaned with a 1% solution of Potassium Permanganate.
  • If the animals have not yet been vaccinated against FMD, Haemorrhagic Septicaemia, Black Quarter, Enterotoxemia etc., this must be done during this month.
  • Deworming must be carried out during this month. Dewormers and anti-parasitical solutions must be changed over a period of time to counter build-up of resistance.
  • Due care should be taken to store/procure fodder for periods of shortage that may occur during the winter months in certain areas.
  • Essential salts must be mixed with feed and given to the animals.
  • Despite the fact that green fodder is abundantly available, ensure that the fodder given to animals is mixed with larger quantities of dry fodder at this time. This is due to the fact that an increase in consumption of green fodder can lead to occurrence of green diarrhoea and a problem of Acidosis (increased acidity in the blood).
  • Sowing of improved varieties of Berseem (B.L.10, B.L.22, Vardan, J.H.B.146, B.L. 42) must be done in this month.
  • 21 days after the sheep have been sheared, their bodies should be drenched with disinfectants to protect them against ecto-parasites.

  • To protect animals from a sudden drop in temperature, keep the animals in a covered shed/area during the night.
  • The bedding/hay in the animal sheds must be kept dry and changed/aired every day.
  • If the animals have not yet been vaccinated against FMD, Haemorrhagic Septicaemia, Black Quarter, Enterotoxemia etc., this must be done during this month.
  • Take adequate care to prevent occurrence of Mastitis in animals.
  • Anti-parasitical medicines and solutions administered not only protect the animals from diseases, but they also help in better assimilation of the feed that is given to the animals, thereby increasing their productivity.
  • Essential salts / mineral mixture in appropriate quantities must be mixed with feed and given to the animals.
  • Due care should be taken to store/procure fodder for periods of shortage that may occur during the winter months in certain areas.
  • Perennial grasses must be cut at this time. These go into hibernation during the winter months and will only be available for harvesting in the months of February – March.
  • To get the maximum benefit from Oat crops, improved varieties (Sirsa Oat 6, Sisra Oat 9, J.H.O.822, and J.H.O.851) may be sown from the middle of this month.
  • Sowing of Berseem and Alfalfa must be completed by the middle of this month.
  • Goat and Sheep must be vaccinated against PPR once every three years.
  • 21 days after the sheep have been sheared; their bodies should be drenched with disinfectants to protect them against ecto-parasites.
  • To protect animals from a sudden drop in temperature, keep the animals in a covered shed/area during the night.
  • If the animals have not yet been vaccinated against FMD, Haemorrhagic Septicaemia, Black Quarter, Enterotoxemia etc., this must be done during this month.
  • Essential salts / mineral mixture in appropriate quantities must be mixed with feed and given to the animals.
  • To protect in-milk animals from Mastitis, all their milk should be removed and after milking, their udders should be cleaned with a disinfectant.
  • The quantity of green fodder must be kept in limited quantities in the animal feed, as it increases the chances of occurrence of diarrhoea and Acidosis in the animals.
  • If there are adequate quantities of green fodder still available after feeding the animals, this must be dried in the sun and stored for periods of shortage.
  • 50 – 55 days after sowing of Berseem and 55 – 60 days of Oats, these can be harvested. Henceforth, Berseem can be harvested every 25 – 30 days.
  • Lopping of leaves of fodder trees should be carried out during this month. These leaves should be dried in the shade and stored for feeding animals during periods of fodder shortage.

Issued in public interest by: The Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture,

Source : Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India In collaboration with South Asia Pro Poor Livestock Policy Programme (a joint initiative of NDDB and FAO)