Hair loss among cattle is an apparent sign that the herd may be experiencing lice problems. Bites from the ticks can cause itching and irritation which prompts cattle to rub, lick, and chew on themselves to regain comfort. This can also cause property damage as cows have a tendency to run on different structures like fences or walls for relief.
Lice can also affect the cattle’s performance since the cows would most likely be rubbing and scratching for a better part of the day instead of eating or resting, which means they can lose around a quarter to a half pound per day.
According to Larry Hawkins, a technical services veterinarian connected with Bayer Animal Health, the key to controlling lice is through an even distribution of lice treatment on affected cattle.
Treatment application should begin from the withers, or the backbone between the shoulder blades of an animal, and from the tail head slowly leading toward the middle of the cow.
Additional treatments may need to be done after a couple weeks later to get rid of any eggs that hatch.
Lice is usually spread through contact. Another method to keep it from spreading is by keeping cattle apart until the situation dies down.
Keeping them two fences apart could help manage the lice problem faster and more effectively.