Blood test method is simple, accurate

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By Rick Greenwell

This information is from Dr. Les Anderson, and I thought it was interesting enough to share it with you all.  I am not suggesting everyone rush out to do this, but it is interesting to know there is another way to pregnancy check.

Last month I discussed the importance of obtaining a pregnancy diagnosis on your cows this fall.  Pregnancy rates appear to be lower than normal this year, likely due to the cows suffering through two consecutive years of drought.  I received several questions regarding a fairly new technology for determining pregnancy in cattle.  Researchers have developed a method to determine pregnancy in cattle via blood sampling.  The blood test is called BioPRYN and is marked by a company called Bio Tracking LLC.

The blood test method to determine pregnancy is simple and accurate.  First, a blood sampling kit needs to be ordered from the company.  The easiest method is to go to biotracking.com and look for their products.  Usually, the cost is about $1.55 per cow for the kit.  All the tubes should be labeled according to the instructions in the kit.  The most difficult part of this process for most producers will be obtaining the blood sample.  Cows must be at least 30 days regnant an d90 days from calving for the test to work.  Also, producer’s who have no experience taking a blood sample will need to schedule this test with their local veterinarian.  Once the sample is obtained, the samples are packaged and sent to one of Bio tracking’s 25 laboratories located across the US.  The cost for the test is $2.40 per cow  So the total costs associated with obtaining the sample if you cannot do it yourself.  Likely the cost per cow will be less than $5 for most producers.

The results are normally obtained with 2-3 weeks and the accuracy of the test is very high.  If the test calls the cow open, then the producer is 99+% sure the cow is open.  When the test determines a cow pregnant, you can be 93 to 95 percent sure they are pregnant.  This test will not determine stage of pregnancy (i.e. 90 days versus 120 days).

Many beef producers in Kentucky have limited access to large animal veterinarians.  Using this blood sampling technique for pregnancy determination may be a solution to these producers who have been unable to obtain a pregnancy diagnosis in their cows.