Elanco Animal Health conducted a survey over the course of the last two months to gauge awareness, knowledge and understanding of immune suppression during calving periods and identify topics of concern in dairy healthcare.
The survey results showed U.S. dairy producers are acutely aware of the consequences of immune suppression, and 59 percent of survey respondents rate mastitis as the top complication of compromised immunity. To a lesser extent, U.S. producers identify immune suppression itself as the cause of this costly disease. The U.S. results were presented by Elanco at the 2016 National Mastitis Council annual meeting in Glendale, Ariz. on Jan. 31.
“As we reframe how we manage the vulnerable time around calving and make immune suppression a priority, we know that more than 80 percent of U.S. producers are looking to their veterinarians for help in protecting their cows’ immune systems,” said Paul Rapnicki, DVM, MBA, Dairy Technical Consultant, Elanco Animal Health. “Focusing on immune suppression as the cause rather than managing the consequences will decrease costly diseases post-calving, while setting cows up for a productive lactation.”
Survey findings further reveal that achieving a successful lactation cycle is the top reason 96 percent of U.S. dairy producers agree that the period of 60 days prior to and 30 days after calving – known as The Vital 90™ Days – is “very important” for the health of their cows.
While setting cows up for a healthy lactation is a top goal, additional survey findings indicate that U.S dairy producers rate optimizing nutrition (40%), preventing mastitis (32%), and enhancing reproduction (28%) as their leading dairy healthcare priorities.