About Dairy Wellness

Dry cow basics help prevent mastitis
Posted by Doris Ledwith

It’s easy to forget about cows at dry off. But, don’t think you can take a break from mastitis management. 

Use the next 60 days to keep dry cows healthy and prepare them for the next lactation. The dry period is the time to clear up any existing mastitis infections and block out new ones. Protecting your cows from mastitis-causing pathogens during dry off starts with their environment. Examine your dry cow lot or pens to answer these questions:

  • Do your cows look overcrowded?
  • Is there ample resting space for all of your dry cows at the same time?
  • Does the bedding look clean and dry? How frequently are pens bedded?
  • Is there a lot of old feed built up around the feed bunks?
  • Can all of your dry cows access feed bunk space at the same time?
  • Do your dry cows have ready access to fresh water?

A few minor tweaks to your dry cow environment will help keep your cows healthy and help you get more mileage out of your dry cow program.

An internal teat sealant, as part of a comprehensive dry cow program, is also a great opportunity to block out mastitis-causing pathogens and reduce the occurrence of new infections.1 Research has shown that cows treated with ORBESEAL® — a unique, nonantibiotic paste as part of dry cow management — had a significant reduction in clinical mastitis when compared with dry cow treatment alone.1 ORBESEAL provides a safe physical barrier between the cow and the environment, helping prevent bacteria and other potentially harmful organisms from entering the teat canal and causing mastitis infections.

Refer to the ORBESEAL label for complete instructions on proper administration at dry off and removal at freshening.

1 Godden S, Rapnicki P, Stewart S, et al. Effectiveness of an Internal Teat Seal in the Prevention of New Intramammary Infections During the Dry and Early-Lactation Periods in Dairy Cows When Used With a Dry Cow Intramammary Antibiotic. J Dairy Sci 2003;86(12):3899-3911.


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