What's Your Secret Weapon to Battle Dairy Cattle Heat Stress?

Jun 12, 2018

What's Your Secret Weapon to Battle Dairy Cattle Heat Stress?

Warm temperatures and humid days mean it’s that time of year again: The annual battle against heat stress and milk production losses.

Ask yourself these three questions to determine if your herd is ready for battle.

1. How much is at stake in your herd? 

Milk production often is the biggest casualty in the fight against heat stress. Research shows a 10-35%1 average milk production loss, adding up to $1.30 to $4.55 per cow per day.2 In a year of tight margins, not many dairy farmers can afford that loss.

2. How can I defend milk production? 

When under heat stress, cows battle reduced dry matter intake and increased energy requirements. Make nutrition a key part of your strategy to defeat heat stress in dairy cattle. A University of Missouri study showed increased dry matter intake and milk yield when cows were fed Purina® Rally® Dairy Feed compared to cows fed sucrose.3

3. What other casualties are common?
Research shows an increase in reproductive challenges when the Temperature Heat Index (THI), calculated using temperature and humidity, is at 55 or higher.4 Early embryonic death is a common reproductive issue caused by heat stress. Consider the long-term effect heat stress has on dry cows and their offspring. 
Nutritional solutions backed by research can be your secret weapon to manage heat stress in dairy cattle. Contact your local Purina Animal Nutrition expert today to incorporate Purina® Rally® Dairy Feed into your herd's ration or call 800-227-8941.

As temperatures rise, don’t forget about your dry cows. Here are some tips to help keep them cool. 

1Rhodes et al, 2009 JDS Collier et al, 2012 Ruminant Nutrition Symposium

2Assumed a 100 lbs/cow at stated lost milk production, assuming $13/cwt. milk price

3K. A. Davison, R. O. Rodrigues, J. A. Davidson, N. M. Barkley, A. L. Kenny, E. C. Adkins, and M. R. Waldron, University of Missouri, Columbia, Purina Animal Nutrition Center, Gray Summit, MO. Effects of a commercial feed additive on production losses during acute heat stress conditions in Holstein dairy cows, 2013 American Dairy Science Association Annual Meeting, Indianapolis, Ind.

4Purwanto, B.P., Y. Abo, R. Sakamoto, F. Furumoto, and S. Yamamoto. 1990. Diurnal patterns of heat production and heart rate under thermoneutral conditions in Holstein Friesian cows differing in milk production. J. Agric. Sci. 114:139-142.


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