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Peruse practical information for the dairy producer on essential topics including management, A.I. and breeding, new technology, and feed and nutrition.

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By now you may have seen that preliminary incubation count (PIC) for raw milk is not just a laboratory recreational activity, but it is a number that affects your milk price. The fluid milk processing industry has recently taken a big interest in this number because it believes two things:

1. PIC is a good predictor of shelf life, and extending shelf life reduces the milk dumped from store shelves.

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Milk quality is dependent on three key areas: milking routine; cows and their environment; milking equipment.

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Salmonella and Clostridial bacteria can be the cause of serious gastrointestinal diseases of cows and calves. While both types of bacteria can target the intestinal tract, cause death by the systemic effects of toxins and show up clinically as bloody diarrhea, they are very different in many other respects.

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Late lactation is an important, yet often overlooked part of the lactation cycle. It’s easy to let cows coast to the finish line, getting fat and lazy along the way.

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The “true type” cow for the progressive dairy producer is the “four-event” cow – a cow that freshens, gets bred, is confirmed pregnant and later is dried off. Cows that only have these four “events” in a given lactation are the cows that generate profit for the dairy enterprise.

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Although lameness has multifactoral causes, an intense lameness prevention program will minimize losses and save cows. Lameness prevention protocol includes:

•Observe cows daily for lameness.

•Detect lameness early through locomotion scoring.

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