Iowa Pre-Conditioning Program

Nolan Hartwig, Faculty, Veterinary Medicine

Iowa State University (ISU) Extension actively supports the Iowa Veterinary Medical Association and the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association jointly sponsored beef cattle pre-conditioning program.  This program, initiated by ISU Extension in 1965, provides for vaccination and treatment of beef feeder calves prior to weaning and shipment to feedlots in Iowa and throughout the nation.  Health and performance are significantly improved, losses are reduced, and profits are enhanced for both cow/calf producers and feedlot operators. 

During the past year, in response to demand, a second option of re-vaccinating for several major diseases was implemented.  In addition to the basic requirements for the green-tagging and preconditioning program, a second level “gold tag” program was implemented.  This program is a response to market demand and further enhances the resistance of feedlot replacement to major diseases and health problems.  In fiscal year 2005, 385,000 cattle were “green-tagged” and formally preconditioned.  Of these, 65,000 were “gold tagged,” a dramatic response to market demand for replacements treated in this way.  ISU Extension provided major leadership and research-based advice for implementing this program, the largest of its type in the United States.


Page last updated: July 8, 2006
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