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Urea poisoning in suckler cows
  1. GL Caldow and
  2. EB Wain
  1. Scottish Agricultural College Veterinary Services, Veterinary Investigation Centre, Greycrook, St Boswells.


Accidental urea intoxication resulted in the death of 17 of 29 suckler cows within six hours after the contamination of their drinking water with urea fertiliser. The other cows showed no lasting ill effects and neither their three-month-old calves nor the stock bull were affected. The urea concentration in the water was 86 mmol/litre, and the concentrations of ammonia nitrogen in the rumen fluid of two of the cows which were examined after death were 1825 and 957 mg/litre. The clinical signs and post mortem findings are described.

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