small steer need help

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nidaho
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small steer need help

Postby nidaho » Sun Mar 22, 2015 9:11 am

my daughter has a 525 pound Hereford, just got over coccosidiosis, am feeding him purina performance steer food and hay. she has 144 days till fair. is there any supplements to give him to help with daily gain. would like to gain 4 to 5 pounds a day is this possible thanks for any info
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shortybreeder
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Re: small steer need help

Postby shortybreeder » Sun Mar 22, 2015 10:35 pm

Appetite Igniter or Appetite Express from Sullivan... One of my friends used it on a steer every day a couple years ago and put on over 4.5lbs/day. It is high risk though, if you push an animal too hard too fast you can easily wreck their stomachs. Don't count on him lasting much past that show if you do reach 4-5lbs ADG.
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Re: small steer need help

Postby nidaho » Mon Mar 23, 2015 8:24 am

thanks I will look into it. all info appreciated
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Re: small steer need help

Postby Ana » Mon Mar 30, 2015 12:44 pm

And get rid of the hay in his diet. It's bulky and low energy. It's just taking up valuable space in his stomach and not contributing much to growth.
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Re: small steer need help

Postby shortybreeder » Tue Mar 31, 2015 12:04 pm

Ana wrote:And get rid of the hay in his diet. It's bulky and low energy. It's just taking up valuable space in his stomach and not contributing much to growth.

That is a terrible idea for a beef steer. To gain 4-5lbs a day he's gonna have to eat around 30lbs/day of grain. Without the hay to keep the rumen under control, he will bloat up like a balloon and die. Hay should be offered free choice, as much as the steer will eat. Sometimes you can get by without feeding a dairy steer hay, but they have been bred to handle extremely high energy diets whereas beef cattle have been bred to handle mostly forage-based diets.
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Re: small steer need help

Postby VCC » Tue Mar 31, 2015 12:59 pm

Work him up to 3 percent of his body weight in grain; if you have access to a good grain hay feed that as well. Hit him with probois granules 2 times a week (just to help keep his gut in check) keep a tube of probiotic paste on hand in case he starts to show signs of problems. I would add Stabilized rice bran to his diet, it is high in energy and helps push them without burning them up. Start with a pound a day, split between his feedings, work your way up to 2 pounds a day.
Have also heard of feeding them 3 times a day to get them to increase intake, so instead of 12 pounds a feeding twice for 24 pounds, you feed him 9 pounds 3 times and get him up to 27 pounds.
Whatever you do, do it in small stages, don’t just pour the feed to him right off, you will end up slowing him down if his gut stops working right. Watch his crap, if he starts getting too loose back off, skip a feeding and then go back to graining him. When you’re trying to push them hard you really need to manage them daily, it is a balancing act that needs constant attention to make sure all goes well.

Good luck
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Re: small steer need help

Postby Ana » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:13 pm

That is a terrible idea for a beef steer. To gain 4-5lbs a day he's gonna have to eat around 30lbs/day of grain. Without the hay to keep the rumen under control, he will bloat up like a balloon and die. Hay should be offered free choice, as much as the steer will eat. Sometimes you can get by without feeding a dairy steer hay, but they have been bred to handle extremely high energy diets whereas beef cattle have been bred to handle mostly forage-based diets.


Beef vs dairy type is inconsequential; any cow can be transitioned to a high grain diet. Is risk of bloat increased? Of course it is, but it is in dairy animals, too. Is bloat inevitable if the steer is managed well? No. The exact name provided doesn't correspond to any Purina feed I'm aware of but my educated guess is that by "performance" she means one of the show feeds, all of which are complete feeds containing adequate roughage to stimulate the rumen. If they're really worried about it they can top dress with sodium bicarbonate. There are thousands of head of beef cattle in show barns all over the country right now who don't eat a speck of hay, better get to running around and reminding them they're supposed to be bloated.

The poster needs 4-5 lbs ADG. The hay is interfering with that, ain't no ifs ands and buts about it. Risks will always be increased when you push a cow to the extremes of performance. Either they accept the risk and do what needs to be done to meet the goal, or they keep feeding hay and the steer probably doesn't make weight. Yes, ideally growth would never need to be pushed to this point and hay could be offered free choice and we could all stand around singing kumbaya, but such is the predicament.

There is no silver bullet to quickly put on the weight. Start with genetics that will allow good growth, keep the calf parasite free, increase the TDN of the ration, increase the amount of the ration consumed, don't let the animal burn it all off and consider an implant if it's "legal" at your show.

If you're really interested there is no shortage of literature on feeding beef cattle high grain diets. Google is your friend. :tiphat:
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Re: small steer need help

Postby TexasBred » Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:16 pm

Make some high quality hay available to the calf. With as much grain ration as you're going to be feeding he/she isn't going to eat a lot anyway so 4-5 lbs. per day sure help maintain rumen health. If your grain ration contains Rumensin that has some buffering effect but check with your feed dealer and see if he has Amaferm. Great product and takes very little added to the feed every day. Some feeds already contain it. It comes in powder form or in a syringe type applicator for oral use. It will improve utilization of the total ration and help with the weight gain and it is not an antibiotic. Best of luck to you. Oh...start a little earlier next year and you won't have to push so hard. ;-)
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Re: small steer need help

Postby crimsoncrazy » Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:41 pm

Always wondered. You allowed to implant show steers?
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Re: small steer need help

Postby shortybreeder » Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:37 pm

Ana wrote:
That is a terrible idea for a beef steer. To gain 4-5lbs a day he's gonna have to eat around 30lbs/day of grain. Without the hay to keep the rumen under control, he will bloat up like a balloon and die. Hay should be offered free choice, as much as the steer will eat. Sometimes you can get by without feeding a dairy steer hay, but they have been bred to handle extremely high energy diets whereas beef cattle have been bred to handle mostly forage-based diets.


Beef vs dairy type is inconsequential; any cow can be transitioned to a high grain diet. Is risk of bloat increased? Of course it is, but it is in dairy animals, too. Is bloat inevitable if the steer is managed well? No. The exact name provided doesn't correspond to any Purina feed I'm aware of but my educated guess is that by "performance" she means one of the show feeds, all of which are complete feeds containing adequate roughage to stimulate the rumen. If they're really worried about it they can top dress with sodium bicarbonate. There are thousands of head of beef cattle in show barns all over the country right now who don't eat a speck of hay, better get to running around and reminding them they're supposed to be bloated.

The poster needs 4-5 lbs ADG. The hay is interfering with that, ain't no ifs ands and buts about it. Risks will always be increased when you push a cow to the extremes of performance. Either they accept the risk and do what needs to be done to meet the goal, or they keep feeding hay and the steer probably doesn't make weight. Yes, ideally growth would never need to be pushed to this point and hay could be offered free choice and we could all stand around singing kumbaya, but such is the predicament.

There is no silver bullet to quickly put on the weight. Start with genetics that will allow good growth, keep the calf parasite free, increase the TDN of the ration, increase the amount of the ration consumed, don't let the animal burn it all off and consider an implant if it's "legal" at your show.

If you're really interested there is no shortage of literature on feeding beef cattle high grain diets. Google is your friend. :tiphat:

dairy vs beef is inconsequential?? Maybe you need to make google your friend. My dairy steers are raised (250lbs to 1400lbs) on a 90/10 mix of whole corn and pellets without any hay. I DARE you to try and do that with a group of beef steers. It's true that they can get by without bloating, but it's much more likely than it is with dairy steers. Like Texasbred said, he needs some good quality hay but he won't eat much with all the grain he'll be getting. The hay is not interfering with their ROG goals. Last year I had a steer getting free choice hay with 2.5% of his body weight in grain and he got Grand Champion R.O.G. at 3.77lbs/day.

To the original poster, VCC is probably the most knowledgeable person on this site in regards to feeding show cattle, go with their advice!
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Re: small steer need help

Postby VCC » Thu Apr 02, 2015 9:28 am

As far as implants, yes, as long as it is not off label you can use whatever is used in the commercial beef industry. I would still check your fair rules but in most cases it is within the scope of a market beef production.
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Re: small steer need help

Postby Crashedprincess » Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:04 am

You want to be very careful when pushing your animal for ADG. Removing all hay or pushing to hard could result in the animal getting acidosis. You can treat it but it can also be deadly. Slowly work it back up on grain and continue to feed it hay. Gain is important but you still need to make sure your animal stays healthy.
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