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The effect of manual forestripping on teat tissue condition and milking performance in Holstein dairy cows milked 3 times daily.

M. Wieland

Events

06-24-2020

Abstract:

401
The effect of manual forestripping on teat tissue condition and milking performance in Holstein dairy cows milked 3 times daily.
M. Wieland*1, P. D. Virkler1, A. Weld1, J. M. Melvin1, M. R. Wettstein1, M. F. Oswald1, C. G. Geary1, R. D. Watters1, R. Lynch2, D. V. Nydam1. 1Department of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University Ithaca, NY, 2Department of Animal Science, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University Ithaca, NY.

The objectives were to study the effect of manual forestripping on (1) teat tissue condition and (2) milking characteristics. In a randomized controlled crossover study, 130 Holstein dairy cows were assigned into treatment and control groups. Premilking udder preparation for the treatment group consisted of: step 1, predipping with 1% iodine; step 2, forestripping of 3 streams of milk per quarter and wiping of teats; and step 3, attachment of the milking unit. Premilking udder preparation for the control group was identical except forestripping was not performed. The time spent from first tactile stimulus to milking unit attachment was kept consistent at 90 s for both groups. The study lasted for 14 d with 2 periods, each consisting of a 2 d adjustment time followed by 5 d of data collection. Machine milking induced short-term changes to the teat tissue (STC) were assessed visually. Milking characteristics [milk yield (kg; MY), milking unit on time (s; MUOT), 2 min milk yield (kg; 2MIN), and time spent in low milk flow rate (s; LMF)], were assessed with electronic on-farm milk meters. Generalized linear mixed models were used to study the effect of treatment on the outcome variables. The odds of STC were lower for cows that received forestripping compared with cows that were not forestripped [odds ratio (95% confidence interval, 95% CI) = 0.31 (0.22—0.42)]. Least squares means (95% CI) for cows that were forestripped and animals that were not forestripped, respectively, were MY, 12.71 (12.24—13.19) and 12.69 (12.22—13.16) kg; MUOT, 253 (245—261) and 263 (254—271) s; 2MIN, 6.11 (5.84—6.38) and 5.59 (5.31—5.86) kg; and LMF, 16 (15—17) and 19 (18—21) s. In this study, cows that were forestripped had higher 2MIN, shorter MUOT, shorter LMF, and lower odds of STC. We conclude that wiping of teats during premilking udder preparation may not provide sufficient tactile stimulation to elicit the cows' maximum physiological milk ejection capacity. This can aggravate the adverse effects of machine milking to the teat tissue, diminish animal well-being, and possibly impact udder health.

Keywords: milking routine, oxytocin, animal welfare.