diary calves


Wednesday August 9 2013


Manage the cause, take

Action to prevent, put

Systems in place,

Treat effectively,


Train staff,

Improve procedures, and

Stop the spread


Mastitis occurs when white blood cells are released into the mammary gland, usually in response to an invasion of bacteria in the teat canal. Environmental mastitis is caused by a bacterial host such as bedding, soil, dust and manure. Housed cows are at a greater risk of mastitis than cows grazing. The main bacteria causing contagious mastitis are Staph aureus and Strep agalactiae. 

Milk quality and yield are affected so it is imperative that equipment is kept clean and everybody working in the dairy understands the importance of treatment and prevention. Hygienic practices will provide a better $ return and less time spent with effected animals.

Cows are most susceptible to clinical mastitis within the first week of calving depending on conditions. 

Teat sealants provide an immediate seal to the Teat canal at drying-off and are an effective way of reducing the incidence of clinical mastitis at calving. Recent experience in Australia shows administration of antibiotic Dry Cow Treatment and Teat sealant at drying-off provides significant further reductions in new infection rates at calving. This practice can cut the number of mastitis cases at calving by up to 50-70% and achieve a signi cant drop in cell count.

For more information on Mastitis prevention, visit the Dairy Australia website or speak to your vet.