- BLOAT – this is usually the worst month, so prevention is key – Rumenox/Rumensin +/-Bloat Oil. Having some spare silage to feed out (long fibre) is important if it’s going to be a bad year too.
- NON-CYCLERS – Take action early. Whichever intervention you choose, the earlier you do it, the more chance it has to be effective, and the greater the return on your investment.
- MINERALS – Get them checked, and boost if needed. Remember peak milk = peak calcium and magnesium requirements too, so don’t stop these either!
- LAMECOWS – early intervention is essential. Corrective trimming of the lesion, a block or slip, and anti-inflammatories are the keys to successful recovery. Antibiotics are only needed in a very small number of lame cows that don’t have footrot. Our vets are happy to do on-farm lameness training with staff.
- HIP INJURIES – treat them early. Hips need to be put back in as soon as possible after dislocation for the cow to stand a chance. Cows that are still using the dislocated leg a bit to walk have the best prognosis.
- HEAT DETECTION – vital for everyone. The more aids and eyes, the better. Time spent watching them in the paddock to see the extra cow each day pays for itself.
Share the link below with farm staff for a refresher: https://www.dairynz.co.nz/animal/reproduction-and-mating/heat-detection/observing-cows-to-detect-heats/
- BODY CONDITION SCORING – Body condition scoring gives a visual estimate of a cow’s fat reserves. This in turn provides information on feed requirements and health status. Managing body condition is critical to help your cows perform their best for lactation and mating. Vetora’s DairyNZ accredited body condition scorers are available to assist you with your condition scoring requirements.
- BULLS – Check that they’re all working and not fighting, and that they’re physically able. If one goes sick/lame then replace him ASAP.
- Make sure bulls arriving are BVD test negative AND vaccinated.
- VACCINATIONS – 5 in 1 / 10 in 1 boosters + Lepto due, as well as BVD if they’re off grazing, and Salmonella to line up with your herd.
- DRENCHING – most will start this month if it’s more than 3 weeks since they’ve been out on grass. If using an oral, this should be a separate time from their milk feeding.
- COCCIDIA – if still on calf meal, most contain a coccidiostat to help. If weaning some early together with reducing meal, calves may need a drench with Baycox C, or Turbo Initial.