Thank you to everyone who made it to our Producer Meeting Friday June 29th on “The Beef Side of Milk” presented by Dr. Dick Wallace from Zoetis. In case you missed it, here are 10 things to remember from his talk, as well as some images of real injection site lesions we had on display. Pictures of all the lesions will be on the digital version of the newsletter on our website.
1. Good Restraint Animal movement causes needle movement during injection, leading to muscle damage and incorrect route of injection. Good restraint also improves safety for the administrator.
2. Location! Location! Location! When possible give injections in the neck vs. the back leg. The neck is a less expensive cut and if a lesion is found, trimmers take a large chunk of meat out around the lesion to ensure meat safety, so better to risk losing the cheaper cut. Also, SQ injections are less likely to cause a local lesion than IM, so give injections SQ when the label allows.
3. Needle Size Matters Choose needle size and length based on the product being given and how. 16g needles for giving thick products, 18g needles for thinner liquids. Longer 1.5in needles for IM injections and shorter 1in or 1/2in needles for SQ injections.
4. Needle Care Sharp needles cause less tissue damage, change every 10-15 animals. Change needles with any damage or contamination.
5. Syringe Care Dirty syringes can cause injection site lesions or even abscesses. Change out disposable syringes frequently. Clean reusable syringes with boiling water only, as soap or disinfectant residues can kill modified live vaccines.
6. Route, Dose and Product must all be correct. Choose the product that is appropriate for the condition with the help of your veterinarian. Don’t give more than 10mL per injection site and space sites one hand width apart.
7. Records are a Must! Every time an animal is treated, record the following: Animal ID, date treated, drug used, dose used, route and location used, name of who administered drug and both the meat and milk withdrawal time.
8. Review Records Before Marketing The FDA is looking for drug residues at slaughter. If they see an injection site lesion, they will test the lesion for residues and flag the carcass for closer inspection. Inspectors are already on high alert for animals with black and white spots and a fully developed udder, so double check withdrawal times before shipping a dairy cow. 75% of meat residues come from Penicillin, Banamine and Sulfadimethoxine.
9. Lesions Happen Meat withdrawal times consider not only the time it takes for the drug to metabolized and excreted by the body but also the time it takes for the local reaction to heal at the injection site. If a drug is given by the incorrect route, the lesions can be much more significant and take longer than the labeled withdrawal time.
10. Please come to our Producer Meetings! We think they are incredibly useful and fun and we look forward to having more. And there will be food! Future dates will be published in the newsletter as soon as we have them scheduled and we’ll likely post it on Facebook as well. If you have any subjects that you’d like us to cover, we’re always looking for more ideas.