Review and Plan
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Mastitis management in dairy farming requires constant review and planning to control the condition in your herd. The page provides insights on setting up strategies for the lactation period, including regular reviews, staff involvement, and using advisory services for monitoring. Key actions during the year are listed, such as purchasing new cows, machine servicing, and farm maintenance. Attention to proper teat spraying and regular herd testing helps in prevention and monitoring of mastitis. Guidelines and technotes are available for detailed information on these practices, helping you keep your herd healthy and productive.
Mastitis indicators (clinical records and SCC levels) should be reviewed constantly throughout lactation, as the mastitis status of the herd is always changing.
During the dry period, time should be set aside to review and plan mastitis management and goals for the next lactation. Staff should be involved in this so the whole team is aware of any changes to your mastitis management strategy.
Farmers must develop their own strategies and annual reviews, but advisors can help to facilitate this process. There are many mastitis monitoring services offered by advisors. These can be through herd health services, in conjunction with milk recording services, or as on-going monitoring services in herds after major mastitis issues have been resolved. For more information on reviewing mastitis performance and setting new targets see Guideline 22. For advise on when to consider a mastitis strategy on farm see Technote 22.
Throughout the year, you should also take time to:
The ability of teat spraying to prevent mastitis depends on teat coverage achieved at each milking, and the measuring and mixing of the teat spray solution.
Teat spraying is wasteful when coverage is poor or the product is made up incorrectly. Regular checks of your equipment and mixing process will help avoid increases in mastitis infections.
For information on aspects of teat spray equipment to check and clean and for factors to consider when reviewing teat disinfectant product and the method of application being used, see Guideline 24 and Technote 24.
A full herd test will provide you with data on milk volumes, milk fat and protein yields, and individual cow somatic cell counts This information enables the subclinical mastitis status of your herd to be monitored, and decisions around high SCC and low producing cows to be made.
Contact LIC or CRV Ambreed for more information about herd testing and see Guideline 23 for using test results to make decisions in conjunction with your Mastitis focus report.