April 2019 Newsletter

Spring Is Here And Pink Eye Is Right Around The Corner!

Spring, it seems, is finally here.  Soon everyone will be busy working fields and getting this year’s crops into the ground.  It also means the return of flies and pink eye.  Every time summer comes around, pink eye is among one of the biggest issues that we fight with in cattle, especially younger heifers and those animals with white faces.  Pink eye will form in one or both eyes and is very distinct in its presentation; cloudy, white eyes, redness around the outer edges of the eye, excessive watery eyes, eyelids held mostly or completely shut.  In more severe cases the eye can also develop ulcers in the cornea (the surface of the eye) to varying depths.

The main cause of pink eye is a bacterial organism called Moraxella bovis.  It’s a very common bacteria that can be found on many farms and on just about any animal and is the only organism that has been shown to cause pink eye on its own.  However, there is another bacterium that is starting to become more prevalent in pink eye cultures and may be a potential factor in causing pink eye called Moraxella bovoculi.  M. bovoculi has been around for awhile but researchers are still trying to determine it’s role in cases of pink eye as either a risk factor, a primary pathogen that causes infection, or if it works in tandem with M. bovis.

There are several risk factors that can aid M. bovis in causing infection either by damaging the cornea of the eye or weakening the immune system of the eye.  Some of the most common risk factors that can damage the eye surface include:

– Tall grasses

– Plant awns (long, thin hair-like extensions from the seed heads of taller mature grasses)

– UV radiation from bright sunlight

– Dry and dusty environments

– Shipping stress

– Trace mineral deficiencies such as selenium and copper

There also are other infectious agents that can be factors in causing pink eye, such as Mycoplasma bovoculi or other Mycoplasma infections, or that can cause infections that look similar to pink eye, such as IBR.  IBR infections look similar to pink eye, however, it rarely causes ulcers in the cornea and the animal will typically have upper respiratory signs as well.  Vaccination against IBR aids in reducing IBR infections but it is still possible especially with unknown vaccination histories groups of animals from unknown sources.

Taking the time to implement good management practices and preventative strategies will help immensely in reducing and preventing pink eye spread in your herd.  Some of those strategies include:

– Vaccinate with a pink eye vaccine 6-8 weeks before the first anticipated cases of pink eye or exposure

– Fly control measures such as fly tags, rubs, dusters, manure management where able, etc

– Ample shade to protect against excessive UV exposure

– Heat abatement to reduce heat stress

– Good nutrition and mineral supplementation to prevent trace mineral deficiencies especially for selenium and copper

– Vaccination with Moraxella bovoculi and/or an autogenous pink eye vaccine specific to your herd, if needed

– If able, separate infected animals from non-infected animals and temporarily isolate and preventatively treat new herd additions

– Wear disposable gloves and protective clothing when handling and treating affected animals

Fortunately, pink eye infections are susceptible to a number of different antibiotics generally making it easy to treat.  You can discuss treatment options, diagnostics testing, and preventative measures with any of the doctors at River Valley Vet to help get a regimen that works best for your farm.


MyPharmStore Online Pharmacy Now Available!

River Valley Veterinary Clinic’s new online store is open and ready to take your order!  Please read the information on the back of this newsletter to learn more about why we have chosen to provide this to you our clients and how you can access the store to place your order and pay.  If there’s anything you can’t find in the store, let us know and we can get it added for you.


River Valley Veterinary Clinic’s MyPharmStore Online Pharmacy

River Valley Veterinary Clinic is now offering online ordering of prescription and non-prescription medications through MyPharmStore, which can be found on our clinic’s website.  We will no longer be processing orders for prescription medications from online suppliers that are not affiliated with River Valley Veterinary Clinic.


Why are we making this change?

You have trusted us with the very important responsibility of the medical care of your livestock.  We know your farm’s history, and our doctors are personally vested in providing the absolute best care for your animals.  By directly authorizing medications through MyPharmStore, we will know that the medications you receive are the exact medications with proper dosage, and that those medications were stored and shipped as mandated by the manufacturer.


Support Small Business

With MyPharmStore, we are going to do our very best to make our medications and preventatives affordable, and we will routinely compare prices with other online providers to make sure that our prices are competitive.

Most importantly, by purchasing from our online store, you are supporting our local business here in Plain and Reedsburg and the warehouse for our supplier, Midwest Veterinary Supply, which is located in Sun Prairie.


Our Guarantee

Our online supply chain is 100% secure.  From the time the medication you order is manufactured, all the way to when you are going to give it to your animal, it has been handled, stored and packaged in compliance with manufacturer guidelines.  The product you receive is guaranteed to be the name-brand medication in the proper dosage and packaging.  Medications you purchase from our online store are guaranteed by the product’s manufacturer and most importantly by us, your farm veterinarians.  We, as doctors, want our patients to get the highest quality medications to treat their medical needs.  If there are any questions or problems, our staff will personally handle the issue and resolve it to your satisfaction. The bottom line is we always want what’s best for your animals.

Two ways to register and order:


  1. Go to rivervalleyvet.net
  2. Click on MyPharmStore
  3. Register to open an account if you don’t already have one
  4. Begin shopping!

 Or Call the Vet Clinic:

  1. Receptionist will create an account online for you, if you haven’t already registered
  2. Give list of items wanted to order

***A credit card or debit card WILL BE NEEDED to finalize all orders on MyPharmStore***


Shipping is free of charge with no minimal order required.

If you have any questions regarding our new MyPharmStore, please call 608-546-4911 or 608-524-8814


We will do our best to accommodate your busy schedule. Please schedule an appointment today!


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