A severe outbreak of undifferentiated respiratory disease affecting 119 of 144 (82.6 per cent) two- to five-month-old housed beef calves was studied by monitoring their clinical signs and rectal temperatures daily or every second day for two months. New cases of respiratory disease, which were first identified three weeks after the calves were housed, occurred over a period of 29 days. The cause of the outbreak was not conclusively determined although 20 per cent of the calves sampled showed serological evidence of recent infection with bovine respiratory syncytial virus and parainfluenzavirus 3. Seventeen of 61 calves (27.9 per cent) which were treated with tilmicosin had to be treated again, compared with nine of 58 calves (15.5 per cent) which were treated with both tilmicosin and flunixin meglumine and did not need further treatment, but this difference was not statistically significant.
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