Hydration for humans certainly helps us in the heat of the summer, but agriculture officials remind farmers it’s also important to keep the health of area livestock in mind. Iowa State Extension beef veterinarian Grant Dewell says preparing cattle for hot and muggy conditions is vital to maintaining herd health. He says working cattle in the mornings before 10:00 is best during summer heat, and not working them at all during a heat wave.
Fresh, clean water is also extremely important, he says, as consuming water is the only way cattle can cool down. When it comes to feeding them, Dewell says to feed 70 percent of cattle’s ration in the afternoon. Heat in the cattle’s food will then ferment later in the day and evening when it’s cooler.
For more tips on how to keep livestock healthy during summer heat, contact the Washington County Extension.