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Can dairy cow mastitis impact milk production?

Posted on: November 29, 2019, by Eleanor
Dairy cow mastitis harm and Prevention
Dairy cow mastitis harm and Prevention

In dairy cow production, mastitis is one of the most common diseases with huge economic losses. To reduce the incidence of mastitis in dairy cows, the key point is to strengthen prevention, and timely treatment is needed if the disease is found. Only the correct treatment method can promote the recovery of the diseased cows and reduce the cost of treatment. The author mainly analyzed the harm of mastitis to female cows and summarized effective prevention and treatment methods for the reference of cattle farmers.

1. Harm

Milk production decreased. When cows are infected with mastitis, the body will produce numerous white blood cells to eliminate pathogenic bacteria and repair damaged tissues, so that numerous white blood cells are concentrated together, but this makes some breast ducts blocked, resulting in the secretion of milk can not be discharged normally, thereby reducing the total number of lactating cells. The quantity affects the whole parity and even the milk yield in the future.

The milk nutritional composition and quality decreased. After the cow gets sick, drug treatment results in the secretion of milk containing numerous antibiotics and somatic cells. Milk is contaminated to a certain extent, thus affecting its quality. Besides, because milk contains too many somatic cells, the level of milk fat, lactose and lactoprotein decreases, while the milk pH value increases, the chloride content increases, and the number of white blood cells increases.

It will cause serious economic losses. As long as mastitis occurs in dairy cows, the milk secreted during antibiotic treatment and withdrawal period is not only inedible but also can cause irreversible pathological changes in mammary gland tissue during long-term treatment, resulting in a significant reduction in milk production, and even more than 20% of dairy cattle are re-infected with mammary gland. Inflammation results in atrophy of the breast pool, which can only be eliminated eventually. Besides, due to the waste of a lot of milk, and the cost of feed and medical costs significantly increased, while requiring numerous additional labor, causing greater economic losses.

It endangers human health. Milk secreted by diseased dairy cows contains numerous pathogenic microorganisms and their toxins or residual pathogenic microorganisms after treatment. If eaten by people, it can lead to diarrhea symptoms, vomiting, and other phenomena.

2. Clinical symptoms

Mild clinical type. Milk pathological changes occurred slightly in diseased cows. When touching the breast, abnormal or mild fever, swelling and pain could not be felt. Milk production was reduced. Milk was thin and contained clots or flocculents, but the color was normal.

Severe clinical type. The diseased cows suffered from acute swelling, redness of the skin, lumps in the breast, obvious fever and severe pain, and often refused to be examined. At the same time, the milk production of diseased cows has been severely reduced, and the milk is gray or light gray, which contains clots. Besides, the body temperature of diseased cattle was normal or slightly increased, but there were no obvious systemic symptoms.

Acute systemic. The diseased cows suffer from severe swelling in the diseased milk area, even the nipples, with purple or reddish skin. When touching the breast, it can feel obvious fever and pain. The whole diseased breast area is very hard, unable to squeeze out milk, or can only squeeze out 1-2 handfuls of clear soup or yellow water. Diseased cattle fever for a long time, body temperature reached 40.5-41.5 C, mental depression, shortness of breath, increased heart rate, decreased appetite or stopped eating.

Chronic type. The diseased cows usually have no obvious clinical symptoms or systemic symptoms in the diseased milk area, but the milk production is reduced, which is easy to cause breast atrophy.

Recessive type. The abnormal changes of breast and milk could not be seen by naked eyes, but the milk yield and quality of diseased cows were reduced, and the number of bacteria cells and somatic cells in milk increased significantly, reaching more than 500,000 per milliliter. At the same time, the conductivity and acidity and alkalinity of diseased cows were higher than those of normal dairy products.

3. Prevention

Dairy cows should be disinfected regularly in places where they often move. When disinfecting, appropriate disinfection drugs and methods must be adopted following the requirements. In severe winter, summer and rainy season, cows are prone to mastitis, at this time more attention should be paid to strengthening disinfection.

Standardize milking operation. Maintain good hygiene during milking. Before milking, dairy cows should clean their breasts. Pay attention to wiping nipples before wiping the breast area, and finally wipe the breast mirrors to ensure that each cow uses a towel alone. Dairy farmers should wash their hands and trim their nails before the operation to prevent breast scratches during operation.

During the operation, the staff should adopt the standard fist style for milking. If a cow suffers from clinical mastitis, it is impossible to use a machine to milk the diseased breast area. It must be squeezed into a special container and centralized treatment should be taken to prevent cross-infection. More attention should be paid to the inability to squeeze the diseased breast area into the cow bed. To avoid infection, the nipple can be bathed before and after milking.

Generally, broad-spectrum fungicides can be used to prevent mastitis. Milk cows should take medicine bath immediately after milking, using 0.1% Bromogeramine, 0.5% chlorhexidine, 0.25% to 0.3% iodine solution, etc. Attention should be paid to the disinfectant solution which is ready to use, and each drug needs to stay for 3 to 5 seconds. Besides, the disinfectant should be replaced regularly to prevent drug resistance.

4. Treatment

When dairy cows suffer from acute mastitis, breast perfusion and systemic treatment should be carried out simultaneously to ensure the best therapeutic effect. In the course of treatment, whether acute or chronic, we must take timely treatment, and adhere to continuous administration for 3 days, the sooner the better. Treatment of mastitis can choose a variety of drugs, but due to the gradual increase of microbial resistance, drug sensitivity tests should be carried out before the formal drug use to ensure the accurate use of effective drugs, and attention should be paid to alternate drug use and alternate drug use in the treatment process to ensure that the effect is remarkable.

Local treatment. Cold compress, massage or applying fish-plaster ointment (containing 10% fish-plaster ointment or 10% alcohol fish-plaster ointment) in the stage of red, hot, swollen and painful cow's diseased milk area, or Rukang diluted with normal saline (the main ingredient is lomefloxacin injection) can be perfused into each breast chamber according to the ratio of 1:5. Inject 5-6 ml once a day for 5 days, and inject a mixture of 400,000 IU penicillin, 500,000-1,000 IU streptomycin and 50-100 ml distilled water twice a day into the diseased breast area.

Systemic therapy. The diseased cattle were injected with 2 million to 2.5 million IU penicillin twice a day. If the diseased cow suffers from acute severe mastitis, it can be injected intravenously with 500 mL 25% glucose, 1500 mL 5% sugar saline, 100 mL compound berberine bisulfate and 100 mL vitamin C twice a day.

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