Reducing ketosis risk gets cow off to better start

25 May 2016

Farm-O-San Pro-Keto Dry, a new dietetic complimentary feed from Trouw Nutrition GB can help ensure fresh calved cows get off to the best start to lactation by reducing the risk and consequences of ketosis.

An increasing problem is high yielding dairy cows, ketosis leads to lower milk yields, poorer fertility and consequently increased production costs. It is estimated that 30% of cows suffer from clinical or sub-clinical ketosis, making it a significant economic drain on dairy farmers.

“Ketosis is a metabolic disease resulting from cows being in negative energy balance as a consequence of depressed energy intakes,” comments Farm-O-San Product Manager Roxanne Winstanley. “In response to heightened energy demand, cows mobilise bodyweight but the liver is unable to fully utilise the fat produced, leading to increased levels of acetone and beta-hydroxybutyrate in the blood resulting in further appetite depression and increased negative energy balance.

“The direct costs of ketosis include drugs and veterinary intervention and discarded milk. Indirect costs would be extended calving interval, higher levels of LDA, retained foetal membranes and metritis. The key to reducing the risk of ketosis is ensuring higher effective energy intakes.”

Pro-Keto Dry is a dietetic feed for dairy cows which contains the ingredients necessary to reduce the risk of ketosis. It is high in vital glucogenic energy, with a combination of propylene glycol and flavoured chicory pulp. Increasing glucogenic energy shortens the period of negative energy balance, reduces body condition loss postpartum and lowers NEFA production. It is particularly important to maximise glucogenic energy in the first 100 days of lactation.

Chicory also contains inulin which is associated with the maintenance of a healthy gut flora. Niacin and vitamin B12 are included to improve energy utilisation, while choline chloride promotes effective liver function.

Pro-Keto Dry should be fed during the last few weeks of the dry period and for the first 3-6 weeks of lactation at a rate of 250g/day.

“Managing cows to help reduce the financial loss associated with ketosis and ensuring they settle into lactation quickly and effectively will be essential to achieve cost-effective milk production,” Ms Winstanley adds.

For further information, contact the Trouw Nutrition GB Farm-O-San Team.