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Thread: johnes

  1. #1
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    johnes

    I bought two 11 month old heifers from a breeder 4 months ago.

    He has contacted me to tell me that the mother of one of the heifers has been diagnosed with johnes and i should test the animal/do not breed her.

    I have been researching and it says the you must wait until an animal is 2 year old before testing, the heifer is now 15 months.

    Where do i stand with this heifer and the seller?

    Can i return the animal and ask for my money back?

    Should i keep the heifer until she is 2 year old and test her in the hope that she hasnt picked up johnes and will be ok?

    What would you expect the seller to do?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Wee Dram's Avatar
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    Re: johnes

    Sounds like they guy that sold you them is sound as he has told you about it, I would ask him to take her back as johnes is a bugger to get rid of once it's in the herd. If you get your money back i would settle for that if you can get paid for the four months keep all the better.

  3. #3
    Senior Member wr.'s Avatar
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    Re: johnes

    Sounds like a very honest chap. Fatten her if he doesn't want her back. She should fatten ok. Johnes mostly rears its ugly head after calving or some form of stress IME. We're testing for it every year now and hope we're getting rid of it after buying 7 bulling heifers from a farm and 5 going down with it after calving. Horrible disease. Don't leave her mix with young calves. Vets are getting up to speed with it now and most can offer good advice.
    Don't itch for something if you're not prepared to scratch for it.

  4. #4
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    Re: johnes

    Even if she tests clear you can't be certain as the tests are fairly unreliable. If you don't have Johnes on farm already I wouldn't keep her for breeding even if she tests ok. Once you got it it's a nightmare to get rid of. Credit to the bloke for telling you though, plenty of others wouldn't have!

  5. #5
    Senior Member LALANS's Avatar
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    Re: johnes

    Concur with everyone, get rid of her pdq.

  6. #6
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    Re: johnes

    Johne's is a funny one, it doesn't pass from adult cow to adult cow so there's no risk there, animals are most susceptible to it in the first year of life particularly in the first weeks so the most likely route of infection is via contaminated teats, either on the cow when the calf sucks or on the teat bucket when suckling. There's also an issue with feeding milk from cows shedding bacteria.

    If you don't bull the heifer to dairy and don't feed it's milk to calves ever then the risk of transmitting Johne's is minimal, the animal may not have it just because the dam has, it depends on the way it was managed as a calf itself. the test is unreliable and doesn't give a conclusive answer anyway because disease status could change, animals that had some exposure as calves may never develop clinical symptoms, animals that had heavy exposure may develop it in the first lactation. all you can really do is be aware of the animals risk status and act accordingly, and if it develops any symptoms, scour and lack of thrift, get it gone ASAP before it loses too much condition.

  7. #7
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    Re: johnes

    Does Johnes affect bulls in any way. Can they pass Johnes to a female or their offspring?

  8. #8
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    Re: johnes

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaffo View Post
    Does Johnes affect bulls in any way. Can they pass Johnes to a female or their offspring?
    Yes, it can affect a bull just the same as a cow. The risk of infection is in the first 12 months of life so they are unlikely to pass it to cows they are serving, or to their offspring directly via the semen. It's a bacterial disease, and in the case of a bull the bacteria would be in the dung, particularly if the bull had clinical symptoms, ie. if it was scouring due to Johne's. (a cow would also shed it in the milk)

    The main risk of infection with a bull would be if you had suckler cows and the calves were on the cows whilst the infected bull was running with them, and the bull's dung got on the cow's teats and the calves ingested some of it. This would be a greater risk in housed cattle, where the dung could be on bedding walls and gates that the calves might lick.

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