Dairy Cow

Dairy Management Tip for the Month - March 2023

On-Farm Management Practices Impact Incidence Rates for Lameness

Management Action

Why is this practice important?

Scrap lots to minimize cows’ hooves coming in contact with manure and urine

Increased exposure of hooves and feet to manure and urine can increase the incidence of foot rot and other infectious foot problems.  Also, moist hooves are softer and may be more susceptible to injury from small stones found in lanes used to move cows to and from barn lots.

Trim feet regularly

Make sure cows can distribute their weight evenly over the claw

Proper and routine use of footbaths

Prevent infectious diseases of the hoof

Minimize standing time on concrete surfaces

Provide comfortable, well-bedded, and properly-designed freestalls for cows to lie down and chew their cuds.

Do not overcrowd the freestall barn- enough stalls are needed so that the timid heifer can “find her own stall”

After feeding, the majority of the herd should be able to lie down in stalls and chewing their cuds

If cows are not using the stalls properly, investigate how to improve their usage (Are the stalls the proper length? Do cows have adequate lunge space to get up and to lie down? Are the stalls comfortable?)

 Prevent hock lesions

Adequate bedding is needed in the rear of the stall to prevent lesions. (With mattresses, 1 inch of bedding should cover the back of the stall.)

February Tip- Properly Use Teat Sealants at Dry Off

  • Clean each teat end with a single-use alcohol pad or alcohol-soaked cotton ball. Use a separate pad or cotton ball for each teat. 
  • Clean the teat located the furthest away first, working toward those closest to you.  Clean each teat until the cleaning pad/ball remains white, using additional pads/cotton balls as needed.
  • Starting with the teat closest to you, insert the syringe tip of the teat sealant into the teat end while pinching off the top of the teat where it meets the udder. Slowly inject teat sealant, using a separate tube for each quarter.
  • Do not message the teat sealant into the quarter.  You want it to remain in the teat canal.
  • Infuse teat sealant into the remaining teats, working from those closest to those furthest away.
  • When done, dip each teat with post-dip.
  • If cows are dried off at another time than following being milked, dip teats with pre-dip, wait 30 seconds, and then dry with an individual towel before starting the procedure outlined previously.


January Tip---- Take time to review your financial side of your business. ---