Animal Nutrition

Avoiding the feed hygiene trap in transition cows

Most of us know that the cattle reproductive transition period is classified as the 21 days pre- and post-calving. However, how often do we really think about all the changes that are occurring during this period?

Some of these changes, attributed to parturition and onset of lactation, include huge shifts in nutrient demand, dry matter intake fluctuation, immune system activation, and pen movements – which can lead to social stress.

“Small external issues can often become big problems when coupled with everything happening during the transition period, therefore, it is essential to decrease internal and external stressors wherever possible,” recommends Katie Raver, animal nutrition and field support specialist for Rock River Laboratory. “Feed hygiene is an important yet often overlooked area that can pose an added challenge to a high-risk animal.”