Supplementing pasteurized waste-milk with vitamins A, D, and E improves vitamin status of dairy calves
Holstein calves fed pasteurized waste milk were blocked by sex and randomly assigned to 1 of 3 treatment groups, control with no vitamin supplementation (CON, n = 18) and 2 levels of an oral vitamins A, D, and E supplement: 0.25 mL/d of supplement (0.25ADE, n = 12) or 0.5 mL/d of supplement (0.5ADE, n = 10). The supplemented calves also received a 5 mL subcutaneous injection of vitamins A, D, and E at birth. The oral and injectable supplements contained 50,000 international units (IU) of vitamin A as retinyl-palmitate, 50,000 IU of vitamin D3, and 500 IU of vitamin E as RRR-α-tocopherol per milliliter of product. Concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D and a-tocopherol, but not retinol, in serum of 0.25ADE and 0.5ADE calves were greater than CON calves. We observed that supplemented calves gained less weight compared with CON calves in the first 28 d; however, height and starter grain intakes did not differ among treatments. Incidence of respiratory infection or diarrhea did not differ among groups. In conclusion, injection plus supplementation of pasteurized waste milk with vitamins A, D, and E increased concentrations of 25(OH)D and a-tocopherol in serum but decreased body weight gain, due possibly to over-supplementation of the vitamins.