Effect of prebiotic supplementation on performance, faecal structure and microbiology, health status and some blood parameters in dairy calves

Thesis Type: Doctorate

Institution Of The Thesis: Bursa Uludağ University, Sağlık Bilimleri Enstitüsü, Turkey

Approval Date: 2014

Thesis Language: Turkish

Student: Erhan Başer



This research was conducted to evaluate the effects of oligofructose enriched inulin supplementation on average daily weight gain, feed intake, feed efficiency, fecal structure and microbiology, fecal volatile fatty acids profile, incidence of diarrhea, general health status and some blood parameters during the birth to weaning period in Holstein calves. A total of 20 male and female Holstein calves born from primiparous cows were used as the animal material. The calves were selected according to sex, birth weight and season of calving, and assigned into two similar groups each with 10 calves. Calves were enrolled into the study at the age of 3 days and remained in the study until the weaning on day 56. Daily dose of 3g oligofructose enriched inulin, dissolved in 15 ml distilled water, was administered orally to calves in the experimental group from the day they were enrolled until the weaning on day 56. No prebiotic supplementation was given to calves in the control group. There were no statistically significant differences in body temperature, hemogram parameters, incidence of diarrhea, fecal score and microbiology, fecal volatile fatty acid profile, fecal pH and performance parameters like average daily weight gain, starter feed intake and feed efficiency between the groups (P>0.05). No statistically significant differences were detected in this research. However, some positive results suggesting that supplementation of oligofructose enriched inulin may decrease calf diarrhea cases by positively affecting the gut microflora during the birth to weaning period in calves.