Just like the off-season for an athlete, the dry cow period is more than an opportunity to let your cows rest. Dry cow mastitis management needs to prepare and condition your dry cows for a successful next lactation. David Kerr, herd manager at Paul Rovey Dairy, discusses the steps of his dry cow program.
The goals of dry cow protocols should be to clear up existing subclinical infections, prevent new clinical infections at freshening, limit exposure to environmental pathogens and, in the end, achieve better milk quality. A dry cow program isn't complete without these three steps: Administer dry cow intramammary tubes labeled for treatment of subclinical mastitis infections and tailored for the pathogens on your dairy operation to help clear up existing infections. Use an internal teat sealant to provide a physical barrier against environmental pathogens and help prevent new infections from developing during the dry period. Vaccinate against Escherichia coli mastitis to help lessen the severity of coliform mastitis and provide a better chance for successful treatment. Set your cows up for the best milk quality possible in their next lactation by investing in mastitis management at dry off. Visit www.milkqualityfocus.com to gain insight on the steps involved in comprehensive dry cow mastitis management from David Kerr, herd manager at Paul Rovey Dairy. 09.15.2011