First Defense® 

When should First Defense® and First Defense Technology™ be given to the calf?
First Defense® should be administered within the first 12 hours after the calf is born.  Most dairy producers find it convenient to be given during the first colostrum feeding.

Can First Defense® be administered after 12 hours?
First Defense® is made directly from colostral antibodies, so for the same reasons why you give colostrum right away, the sooner First Defense® is given the better the absorption. A newborn calf’s digestive tract is highly permeable, and anything that enters will be absorbed by the blood stream. The amount of absorption decreases over time, and does so dramatically after 12 hours of birth, with 50-75% absorption already complete. After 24 hours, the gut closes and antibodies are no longer absorbed.

Should First Defense® be given before or after colostrum?
Efficacy is not affected either way, but we recommend giving First Defense® after the first colostrum feeding, especially if tube feeding. This allows the calf to develop a suckling reflex prior to dosing, and may enhance the delivery of the bolus by lubricating the throat.

Do I need to use a bolus gun?
To help ensure proper delivery to the esophageal opening, we strongly recommend the use of a correct-fitting dosing gun. The use of dosing guns with internal flanges or undersized openings may fracture the bolus shell, while guns with oversized openings could allow the bolus to slip.  Alternatively, the contents of the bolus may be emptied and dissolved in warm water, milk replacer or colostrum. Just be certain that the calf receives the full dose, so be cautious that the contents don’t spill or stick to the side of the container being used.

How much IgG is in a bolus?
– The amount varies from serial to serial.  A bolus can hold approximately 5g of powder, of which greater than 50% is IgG. However, the efficacy attributed to First Defense® is due to the specificity of the antibodies, not the quantity. First Defense® is tested before release to ensure guaranteed levels of protection for two of the main causes of scours, K99+ E. coli and coronavirus.

I am using a pouched colostrum supplement (or replacer) – why should I give First Defense®?
Those products may help to increase the overall IgG levels in the calf, but do not have the specific disease protection found with First Defense®.  First Defense® is the only product on the market with USDA-approved claims to reduce mortality and morbidity from K99+ E. coli and coronavirus, two of the main causes of scours. When it comes to protecting your calf from scours, the quality of the antibodies given is critical.

How long does it take for a First Defense® bolus to fully dissolve?
The bolus and its contents should dissolve within approximately 15-20 minutes.

How long will First Defense® protect the calf?
The antibodies in First Defense® are re-secreted throughout the period of risk of exposure, protecting the calf until its immune system becomes more developed.

I gave a second First Defense® bolus by mistake. Will this harm the calf?
Administering additional boluses will not harm the calf in any way.

First Defense Technology™

Do First Defense Technology™ Gel Tubes need to be refrigerated?

Why do First Defense Technology™ Gel Tubes and 90Dose Bulk not have the label claims?
ImmuCell has taken the active ingredient from the First Defense®  Bolus and changed the delivery format.  Due to this, the USDA considers them “new products”.  ImmuCell is actively working on label claims and assures our users, it has the same active ingredient.


What if I over diluted my CMT reagent?
The gelling properties of the test are not affected by minimal over dilution.

Will the CMT indicate how many SCC’s are present in the milk sample?
The CMT will give you a range of the SCC’s to help you assess the likelihood and severity of a mastitis infection, but it does not give an exact count.

If the CMT reagent is frozen, is it OK to use?
It is not recommended to allow the CMT concentrate or mixed solution to freeze.  The freeze/thaw cycle may affect the pH of the product.

If the CMT reagent or working solution becomes discolored, is it OK to use?
Discoloration will not affect the gelling reaction that occurs in mastitis, however it may make the reaction more difficult to view. Most water is slightly acidic, so just adding a few drops of CMT concentrate could possibly turn it orange/yellow. If this occurs, go ahead and prepare the working solution as directed.  If the reagent is discolored before dilution, or remains orange/yellow after diluting, the CMT reagent may be too acidic. Notify either your distributor or ImmuCell and it will be replaced free of charge.

Does bottled water containing added minerals (e.g., magnesium sulfate and potassium bicarbonate) affect the CMT?
The added minerals are not expected to have much of an effect on the gelling reaction, but they could change the color of the reagent.

Will the CMT work with milk from animals other than cows?
ImmuCell does not have validation data on the CMT’s use on other animals.  However, there are many field studies and related articles that have reported successful usage with other animals, such as goats and sheep.