Technical note: Establishment of an ileal cannulation technique in preweaning calves and use of a piecewise regression approach to evaluate effects on growth and pH fluctuation of ileal digesta

I. Ansia, H. H. Stein, M. R. Murphy, J. K. Drackley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Digestibilities of nutrients, especially protein, are crucial characteristics of milk replacers in a calf-rearing program. Endogenous synthesis of proteins and microbial fermentation in the large intestine alter apparent total-tract digestibility of AA. Therefore, collection of digesta samples at the end of the ileum is the only method to estimate true small intestinal digestibility of AA. The aim of this work was to evaluate the effectiveness of inserting a T-cannula into the distal ileum of preweaning calves for use in digestibility studies. A second objective was to evaluate the use of a “broken-line” statistical model to compare treatment effects on calf growth and digesta pH. A T-cannula was surgically installed in the terminal ileum of 2 calves approximately 5 cm anterior to the ileocecal junction at 15 d of age, and 2 paired noncannulated calves were used as controls. Cannulation did not affect mean body weight (BW), average daily gain, milk and water intakes, and body frame dimensions. However, final BW (89.2 vs. 94.6 kg) was lower and starter intake (0.06 vs. 0.21 kg/d) tended to be decreased in cannulated calves compared with control calves. No effects on health scores, rectal temperature, or the odds of incurring diarrhea or being medicated were observed. Flow of digesta (46.4 ± 0.04 g/h) increased linearly after feeding, whereas there was a quadratic effect of time on digesta pH, with the nadir at approximately 8.5 h postfeeding. The broken-line model successfully fitted daily fluctuations of pH and allowed us to detect differences in growth slopes between cannulated and control calves. Despite the expected negative effect on BW, we conclude that this technique permitted sampling of representative ileal digesta while allowing satisfactory growth and health of the calves.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11061-11066
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Volume102
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2019

Keywords

  • calf
  • ileal cannulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics

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