BVD and Breeding Bulls
With breeding bulls the most important things with BVD control is to ensure:
Your bulls are not carriers of BVD. This carrier state is called persistently infected (P.I.). The antigen test for P.I. status is usually done by bull breeders prior to sale. If unsure get your bulls blood tested.
The bulls do not get a transient infection (T.I.) of BVD during mating. If naïve bulls are introduced to a herd of cows with calves at food they can get the "flu-like” symptoms which effects semen production for up to 6 weeks. To prevent this situation you can:
Ensure the cow herd with calves is clear of P.I.'s
Vaccinate bulls with a BVD booster prior to mating.
What you can do with your bulls prior to joining:
Check their status with source to ensure they are blood test antigen negative.
Booster vaccinate if they have had vaccine prior or start with a 2 shot vaccine programme 4 weeks apart.
We do sell smaller vials of BVD vaccine for bull teams. If you were going to do one easy thing for BVD control it would be vaccinate service bulls each year.
Have they had exposure? To find out we run a pooled antibody test on 10-15 samples to check for herd exposure. This is a different test from the antigen test for P.I. status.
If yes and exposure is high - then vaccinate or eradicate prior to mating.
If no - focus on biosecurity, especially during 1-4 months pregnant state when exposure can result in P.I. formatting.