BVD Surveillance using Ear Notch Immunohistochemistry

Immunohistochemistry on ear notch samples pinpoints BVDV persistent infection.  It is appropriate for cattle of all ages and is considered the test of choice for young animals.

Suggestions from the Academy of Veterinary Consultants have been published to help practitioners and producers in making decisions related to BVDV control strategies for their herds.

Immunohistochemistry on ear notch samples is one potential testing option.

Why Test?

Good candidates for BVDV surveillance testing are herds which exhibit the following:

  • Poor reproductive performance
  • High calf morbidity/mortality despite good sanitation and nutrition
  • Laboratory testing confirming evidence of BVDV in the herd

For optimum results, testing should start BEFORE the breeding season, producer goals should be known and achievable, and a plan of action should be in place.

Who Needs to be Tested?

In general:

  • All calves should be tested
  • All open cows or cows which have lost calves
  • All replacement bulls and cows
  • All replacement heifers

Please bear in mind that negative BVDV PI testing does not guarantee absence of a BVDV problem.

Without adequate attention to vaccination programs and biosecurity concerns, simply removing PI cattle from the herd will not necessarily remove a BVDV or any other disease problem.

Contact Information:

Feel free to contact Dr. Drew Magstadt at 515-294-1950 or any of the diagnostic pathologists at ISU VDL for help in tailoring a herd health surveillance program with an emphasis on BVDV for your producers.

ISU BVD Resources

Other BVD Resources