Mastitis and Udder Health in a Dairy Herd of Swedish Holstein and Swedish Red and White Dairy Cattle
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The main production loss in today’s dairy industry is due to udder diseases and more specifically mastitis, which on its own constitute for more than half of all veterinary treatments within the Swedish dairy industry. The way of managing the health status within a herd today is commonly by monitoring the somatic cell count, SCC, from the monthly continuous milk sampling done at each farm. There are two main dairy breeds in Sweden, the Swedish Holstein (SLB) and Swedish Red and White (SRB), both high yielding breeds with similar production qualities, but where the Swedish Red and White cow has been shown to have better health qualities along with lower incidences of mastitis. Using one single dairy herd where both breeds are reared we wanted to investigate the health status within the herd, using the commonly used management tools of today. With the aid of the monthly milk samples the composition of the milk could be analysed for each individual lactating cow using data from 2008-2010. The study showed the differences in both the incidences of veterinary treated clinical mastitis along with the higher mean somatic cell count for the Swedish Holstein cows compared to the Swedish Red and White cows.