In this study, we evaluated and compared the performance of transmission and attenuated total reflectance (ATR) infrared (IR) spectroscopic methods (in combination with quantification algorithms previously developed using partial least squares regression) for the rapid measurement of bovine serum immunoglobulin G (IgG) concentration, and detection of failure of transfer of passive immunity (FTPI) in dairy calves. Serum samples (n = 200) were collected from Holstein calves 1–11 days of age. Serum IgG concentrations were measured by the reference method of radial immunodiffusion (RID) assay, transmission IR (TIR) and ATR-IR spectroscopy-based assays. The mean IgG concentration measured by RID was 17.22 g/L (SD ±9.60). The mean IgG concentrations predicted by TIR and ATR-IR spectroscopy methods were 15.60 g/L (SD ±8.15) and 15.94 g/L (SD ±8.66), respectively. RID IgG concentrations were positively correlated with IgG levels predicted by TIR (r = 0.94) and ATR-IR (r = 0.92). The correlation between 2 IR spectroscopic methods was 0.94. Using an IgG concentration <10 g/L as the cut-point for FTPI cases, the overall agreement between TIR and ATR-IR methods was 94%, with a corresponding kappa value of 0.84. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and accuracy for identifying FTPI by TIR were 0.87, 0.97, 0.91, 0.95, and 0.94, respectively. Corresponding values for ATR-IR were 0.87, 0.95, 0.86, 0.95, and 0.93, respectively. Both TIR and ATR-IR spectroscopic approaches can be used for rapid quantification of IgG level in neonatal bovine serum and for diagnosis of FTPI in dairy calves.