Costs associated with selected preventive practices and with episodes of clinical mastitis in nine herds with low somatic cell counts.

K. H. Hoblet, G. D. Schnitkey, D. Arbaugh, J. S. Hogan, K. L. Smith, P. S. Schoenberger, D. A. Todhunter, W. D. Hueston, D. E. Pritchard, G. L. Bowman

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40 Scopus citations

Abstract

Nine dairy herds (mean size, 149 cows) with bulk-tank milk somatic cell counts of less than 300,000 cells/ml and greater than 80% of cows with Dairy Herd Improvement Association linear somatic cell counts less than or equal to 4 were selected for study. Each herd was monitored for 12 consecutive months. Duplicate quarter-milk specimens were collected from each cow for bacteriologic culturing at beginning of lactation, cessation of lactation, and at the time of each clinical episode of mastitis. Streptococcus agalactiae was never isolated and Staphylococcus aureus was isolated from less than 1% of all quarters. There were 554 episodes of clinical mastitis. During the year of study, the incidence rate of clinical mastitis varied from 15.6 to 63.7% of cows among the 9 herds. Mean costs per cow per year in herd for mastitis prevention were: $10 for paper towels, $3 for nonlactating cow treatment, and $10 for teat disinfectants. Mean cost associated with clinical mastitis was $107/episode. Approximately 84% ($90) of the costs attributed to a clinical episode were associated with decreased milk production and nonsalable milk. Costs of medication and professional veterinary fees per clinical episode varied significantly among the 9 herds. Three of the herds did not have a veterinarian treat a clinical episode of mastitis during the year of study even though 2 of these herds had the first and third highest incidence rates of clinical mastitis. When calculated on a per cow in herd basis, mean costs of $40/cow/year were attributed to clinical mastitis.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)190-196
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Volume199
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 15 1991

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