Two experiments were conducted evaluating dietary level of vitamin E and methods of delivering vitamin E to beef cattle. In Exp. 1, 16 beef steers were used to examine effects of 0, 285, 570, or 1,140 IU of vitamin E/d per animal on performance, febrile response, and metabolic responses following intranasal exposure to infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus (IBRV). In Exp. 2, 120 steer calves were used to evaluate efficacy of three methods of delivering vitamin E on performance and health during a 28-d receiving period. Treatments were an oral drench of vitamin E, a subcutaneous injection of vitamin E, or supplemental vitamin E added to the 70% concentrate diet. No effects (P>0.10) of vitamin E concentration on ADG, BW, DMI, or serum metabolites were observed in Exp. 1. A linear increase (P<0.10) in rectal temperature was detected on d 2 and 3; cattle that received the greatest level of vitamin E had the greatest and most rapid increase in rectal temperature overall (P<0.02). In Exp. 2, no effects of delivery method were evident for ADG, DMI, or gain efficiency. Cattle receiving a drench or injection had a lesser (P<0.13) percentage of morbidity (85% vs 95%) than those receiving dietary vitamin E. Results suggest that supplemental vitamin E may increase the inflammatory response to a viral pathogen and that providing vitamin E by injection or oral drench may be more beneficial than feeding vitamin E.
- Beef Cattle
- Vitamin E