An essential feature of any herd vaccination programme is ensuring that cattle, and especially heifers, are protected during the high-risk periods. This may be when the animals are at the highest risk of exposure to infection or when exposure may have the greatest impact. It is also vital that cattle receive booster vaccinations in line with the specific vaccine recommendations to maintain this protection.

This especially pertains to bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) where the primary goal is to prevent the birth of persistently infected calves, which may be produced if in-calf cattle are infected soon after service. It is vital, therefore, that cattle are fully protected before they conceive. They should complete their one or two shot primary course with the appropriate interval before first service to ensure immunity is fully developed. If using a two-shot vaccine, you need to keep the interval between the two shots in mind as well.

Single-shot primary course

Bovela is the first BVD vaccine to require only a single shot primary course and a three-week onset of immunity, making herd protection simple.

Administering BVD vaccine according to these timelines can be difficult enough in a block calving system where all animals will be served within a few weeks, but in a year-round calving system this can be a real challenge.

It is not surprising that work has shown that only 24% of primary vaccine courses are given within the correct time frame, far enough in advance of breeding¹.

Another significant issue in an all year calving herd is ensuring that in-calf heifers receive their first booster at the right time to maintain the level of protection needed.

Vaccination systems vary but heifers are often vaccinated in batches throughout the year prior to first service. However, what if they fail to conceive as quickly as hoped? What if they calve down just after the main herd has received their annual booster? These first lactation animals may go two years between their primary course and first booster and would need another primary course for adequate protection.

Proven protection against bovine viral diarrhoea

This is another area where Bovela can make herd protection simple. With proven protection for a full twelve months after one shot, it is easier to get animals into a once-a-year vaccination regime and be confident of the results.

If an animal’s vaccination lapses beyond twelve months, there is never a requirement of having to restart a primary course as only one shot is needed.

With 100% foetal protection against both BVDV types 1 and 2 for twelve months, after only one shot, you can feel confident in the simplicity of Bovela’s herd protection. – Boehringer Ingelheim


1. Meadows (2010) A Study to Investigate the Use and Application of BVDV Vaccine in UK Cattle. Cattle Practice 18(3): 202-215. BOVELA vaccine forcattle. Lyophilisate and solvent for suspension for injection. Each 2.0 mL dose contains modified live BVDV*-1, non-cytopathic, parent strain KE-9 of at least 1x 104.0 0TCID50 and modified live BVDV*-2, non-cytopathic, parent strain NY-93 of at least 1x l04.0TCID50. Reg. no. G4283 (Act 36/1947). For animal use only. Registration holder: Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health South Africa (Pty) Ltd. Company reg. no.: 1997/022402/07. Tel: +27 (011) 348-2400. Email: BI Ref.: V149 (September 2020). Customer Helpline: 0860 637 425.

Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health South Africa (Pty) Ltd.
Company Reg. No.: 1997/022402/07. Tel: +27 (011) 348-2400. Email:
BI Ref.: V133 (August 2020). Kliëntehulplyn: 0860 637 425.