May 12, 2009

Facial Eczema (FE). Farmer Information. Part 6. (Dairy Cattle). Zinc oxide. Crisis dosing.

Agriculture, farming, animal husbandry, animal health, disease, Facial Eczema, dairy cattle, dosing in crisis, zinc, dose rates

 By Dr Clive Dalton

Original 1991 information written by Dr Barry Smith and Dr Neale Towers, Ruakura Agricultural Research Station, Hamilton, New Zealand.

6. FACIAL ECZEMA: (Dairy Cattle). Zinc oxide. Crisis dosing.
  • Where the danger of FE does not normally warrant routine zinc oxide dosing, cattle can be protected by dosing during danger periods only, i.e. "Crisis dosing".
  •  Crisis dosing gives less protection than long-term routine dosing and therefore requires higher dose rates to give adequate protection.
  •  Daily dosing during danger periods will reduce the number of animals affected and the severity of the liver damage in affected animals by about 60%.
  • Crisis dosing is best restricted to daily or at most twice weekly dosing. 
  • Zinc oxide drenches can be prepared with or without a seaweed based "stabiliser".
  •  Stabilisers have two advantages:
  • (1). They increase the ease of mixing and drenching.
  •  (2). They allow the mixing of more concentrated drenches and therefore use of smaller drench volumes.
Unstabilised drench
  • Mix 1 kg zinc oxide with 2.5 litres of water.
  •  Sprinkle powder on water and leave to wet.
  •  Stir until smooth and lump free.
  •  If too stiff to flow through drench gun, add a little more water.
  •  If too thin to stay in suspension, stir in a little more zinc oxide powder.
  • This produces about 2.7 litres of drench.
Stabilised drench
  • Mix 1 kg zinc oxide powder with 1 litre of water and 200 ml of "stabiliser".
  •  Mix the stabiliser and water first.
  •  Sprinkle powder on the water and let settle and wet.
  •  Stir to a smooth creamy paste.
  •  This produces about 1.4 litres of drench.
Use liquid "farm" strength seaweed fertilisers as stabilisers such as Maxicrop
(Bell-Booth Ltd), Sea Magic (Yates Ltd) and Green Label Response (Coast
Biologicals Ltd).

Dose Rates
  • Unstabilised drenches: 10 ml/100 kg liveweight.
  • Stabilised drenches: 5 ml/100 kg liveweight

Approximate daily dose volumes - Crisis dosing

  • If dosing at 2- or 3-day intervals, multiply the daily dose rate by the number of days between doses.
Note: Proprietary mixes such as Cozinc (Coast Biologicals Ltd), Maximix  (Bell-Booth Ltd) and
 Nu Zinc (Nufarm Ltd) should be mixed and used as recommended on the product label.

Some motor-driven drenching systems cannot be adjusted to the recommended dose
volumes. Therefore the drench mixture must be adjusted so that the correct amount of
zinc oxide is given.

This material is provided in good faith for information purposes only, and the author does not accept any liability to any person for actions taken as a result of the information or advice (or the use of such information or advice) provided in these pages.

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