The day of calving is a critical time in the life of a dairy cow. It needs to be prepared for the day and the following lactation.
Prior to calving the dairy cow requires a high fibre ration to keep the rumen in good order with the correct mineral balance to reduce the risk of milk fever and displaced abomasums. Ideally she will be carrying the same body condition as when she was dried off (Condition score 2.5 to 3) and have been introduced to some of the milking ration just prior to calving.
Calving pens need to be clean and dry to avoid bugs like rotavirus and E. coli etc. NATUR-CLEAN or CUBICLE CARE are good anti-bacterial agents for keeping the environment healthy and dry.
On the day of calving the amount of dry matter that a cow will eat dips dramatically and all must be done to ensure this drop is kept in check. Forages must be clean, fresh and appetising. Some of the milking ration should be offered with, possibly some sugar beet pulp to help intake. MAXCARE REVIVA is a reviving drink to help with this process and cows love it. It gives a good source of energy and minerals to stimulate appetite.
Our TRANSITION COW ROLLS contain propylene glycol which is a very concentrated and easily digestible source of energy for the new calved cow. This is also available in 25 litre drums for drenching any cow which looks a bit down and needs a boost of energy. Cows that are deficient in energy at this time are more likely to succumb to a twisted abomasum.
High starch feeds should only be introduced slowly to give the rumen chance to adapt to their inclusion.
This is a very brief account of the problems that can occur at a difficult transition in the cow’s life. For more details contact me on 07710 600848.

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