Tube Feeding

Designed by a Vet – Chosen by Farmers – Preferred by Calves

Tube feeding, otherwise called oesophageal feeding or calf drenching, is a necessary procedure when a calf cannot suckle or nurse sufficient nutrients for health or survival.

The procedure involves passing a tube into the oesophagus and allowing liquid to flow directly from a bottle or bag into the oesophagus and down to the stomachs.

There are two common scenarios where tube feeding can benefit the health or save the life of a calf:

  1. The first high-antibody colostrum feed
  2. Providing fluids, electrolytes and energy to a sick calf

Tube feeding must be carried out carefully as to prevent injury, minimise stress and prevent liquids entering the airway. There are delicate tissues around the throat of the calf and the oesophagus is also susceptible to injury when harsh materials are used. Injuries and bruising around the throat and oesophagus are painful and can slow recovery and subsequent suckling time. Infections from scratches in the throat are very difficult to cure and can therefore be fatal.

The Trusti Tuber and Flexi Tuber calf drenchers are specially designed to ensure the tube will move naturally with the anatomy of the calf and the natural swallowing mechanism. This means optimum comfort and safety for the calf. Stress to the calf is also minimised by preventing pressure on the airway entrance during feeding, enabling the calf to breathe easily. Users notice straight away how much more relaxed their calves are, making the procedure much more pleasant. The Trusti Tuber proved an 88% reduction in behavioural stress when compared with a rigid feeder.