Journal of Animal Health and Production

Research Article
J. Anim. Health Prod. 9(3): 254-261
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Dede Kardaya*, Deden Sudrajat, Dewi Wahyuni

Universitas Djuanda Indonesia.

Abstract | The preweaning period is a critical period for calves that extensively graze in tropical areas because calves are very susceptible to various heat stresses and ectoparasites. This condition is exacerbated by the low nutrient content in the natural grass available in the southern regions of West Java, Indonesia. Feeding flushing diets on the preweaning calves are expected to improve the calf’s performance. A study on the inclusion of flushing diets aims to improve preweaning calves’ performance grazed extensively. The study used 15 male and 15 female preweaning Pasundan calves allocated to a completely randomized factorial design with two factors (gender: two levels and diets: three levels) and five replicates. The three levels of the diet factors were 1) grazing, 2) grazing and fed flushing diets without urea-impregnated zeolite, and 3) grazing and fed flushing diets containing urea-impregnated zeolite. The observed variables included morphometric variables (chest girth, chest depth, body length, shoulder height), body condition score, and body weight gain. The collected data were analyzed by a general linear model univariate analysis. The results showed that feeding of flushing diets increased (P <0.05) daily body weight gain (252.78 ± 77.22 g in grazing calves vs. 362.50 ± 141.69 in flushing-1 calves or 486.11 ± 173.47 g in flushing-2 calves) and improved (P <0.05) body condition score change (1.33 ± 0.51 in grazing calves vs. 2.33 ± 0.51 in flushing-2 calves) of the preweaning calves but did not affect the morphometric variables. In conclusion, the inclusion of both flushing diets increased daily body weight gain, and the inclusion of flushing diet containing urea-impregnated zeolite improved the preweaning calves’ body condition score but did not affect the morphometric variables.

Keywords | Body weight gain; Chest girth; Morphometric; Shoulder height; Urea-impregnated zeolite.