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J Anim Sci. 1991 Jan;69(1):258-63.

Physiological responses of newborn Bos indicus and Bos indicus x Bos taurus calves after exposure to cold.

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Texas A&M University Agricultural Research and Extension Center, Overton 75684.


Brahman (n = 9) and 1/2 Simmental x 1/4 Brahman x 1/4 Hereford (n = 11) calves were utilized to determine the influence of exposure to cold on the physiology of the neonate. All calves were removed from their dams within 20 min of birth and prior to suckling. Calves were assigned randomly within breed to either a warm (W; 31 degrees C) or cold (C; 4 degrees C) environmental treatment group. Jugular blood samples were collected via indwelling catheters at 20-min intervals for 180 min. At 100 to 120 min of sampling, all calves were given 1.2 liters of colostrum from their dams via stomach tube. At 120 min, C calves were placed in the W environment. Calf vigor score (CVS) and rectal temperature were determined at each time blood was collected. Serum or plasma was analyzed for glucose (GLU), lactate (LAC), blood urea nitrogen (BUN), hemoglobin (HEM), triglyceride (TRG), triiodothyronine (T3), thyroxine (T4), insulin (INS), cortisol (CORT) and nonesterified fatty acid (NEFA) concentration. Rectal temperature was lower (P less than .01) in C Brahman than in W Brahman and C or W crossbred calves. Crossbred calves had higher (P less than .01) CVS than Brahman calves. Calves in W had lower (P less than .01) GLU than C calves. Brahman calves had higher GLU, LAC, BUN, TRG, T3, T4 and CORT (P less than .05) than crossbred calves. The C Brahman calves had the highest (P less than .05) TRG, CORT, T3 and T4 of all groups. Concentration of NEFA were higher (P less than .01) in C than in W calves.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

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