It amazes me, year after year, when we PAP test bulls, that they figured this out! It’s an amazing procedure. I made a video about it years ago, you might want to watch.
A quick poke and the needle lands in the jugular, often leaking blood from the mighty vein.
A long catheter is threaded through it, clear down to the bull’s (or cow’s) heart.
Hooked up to a transducer, the catheter is pushed further into the heart, and on the screen comes the measurement we’re looking for. Pulmonary arterial pressure is measured. The readout tells us immediately if we’re going to keep the animal or not. High numbers may lead to High Mountain Disease aka Brisket Disease. Hypoxia or respiratory distress can lead to death. Often, all it takes is taking the cow or calf to a lower elevation where the distress is not evident. Since you don’t want this in your herd, culling bulls that have it is an easy way to reduce your risk.
Within a few minutes, the test is complete. The bulls continue to get a couple of more tests, one for semen viability and another to test for trichomoniasis in the bulls we will run in common with other ranches.
When people belittle agriculture, I immediately flash to these days. These advanced procedures and tests give ranchers an advantage unheard of just a few years ago. This lifestyle is much more than just letting cows eat grass, and I wish more people realized that!Find me here!