Date of Completion

Spring 5-1-2021

Thesis Advisor(s)

Amy Safran; Steven Zinn

Honors Major

Animal Science


Dairy Science


Dairy calf immune development leaves calves susceptible to illness during the pre-weaned stage of life. Previous studies have shown that the use of probiotics during this time may result in increased growth rates and decreased incidence of illness, particularly diarrhea and scours. We hypothesized that by providing probiotics during the time from birth until weaning, calves on study would experience similar growth and health benefits. Neonatal calves (N=32) were provided milk replacer three times daily, with half of the calves receiving Probios® supplements mixed in with their first morning feeding. Growth and health measurements were collected weekly. Probiotic administration significantly increased both the hip height (P=0.0297) and the wither height (P=0.0350). There were no significant differences found between probiotic treatment and weight or heart girth (P>0.05). Less calves who received probiotics experienced diarrhea compared to the control group, showing a possible correlation between supplementation and health benefits.

Included in

Dairy Science Commons