Acta Vet. Brno 2017, 86: 345-352

Relationship between dystocia and the lactation number, stillbirth and mastitis prevalence in dairy cows

Vida Juozaitienė1, Arunas Juozaitis1, Arvydas Kardisauskas1, Judita Žymantienė2, Vytuolis Žilaitis3, Ramūnas Antanaitis3, Modestas Ruzauskas2

1Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Faculty of Animal Husbandry Technology, Department of Animal Breeding and Nutrition, Kaunas, Lithuania
2Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Anatomy and Physiology, Kaunas, Lithuania
3Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Large Animal Clinic, Kaunas, Lithuania

Received March 16, 2017
Accepted December 19, 2017

Successful management of lactating dairy cows needs to integrate the programs of herd reproduction and health. The objectives of this study was to determine the relationship of dystocia, stillbirths, and the prevalence of mastitis in dairy cow herds. A total of 559 304 Lithuanian Black and White dairy cows were evaluated in relation to calving ease and stillbirths. Moreover, 1498 cows from the aforementioned group were tested for the milk somatic cell count and the presence of udder microbiota in the post partum period. The majority of extremely difficult births were estimated in primiparous and multiparous cows of lactations 6–8 (3.8–4.2% births) (P < 0.0001). Repeatability of dystocia was determined in 82.7% of cows in the following lactation (P < 0.0001). The stillbirth parturition rate was estimated to be 5.37% and shown to be the most important problem in the first calving compared to the second and subsequent calvings (P < 0.0001). Stillbirth was 11.2 × higher in cows with severely difficult calving compared to cows having no calving difficulties or slight calving difficulties (P < 0.0001). Dystocia significantly increased the somatic cell count (P < 0.05) and incidence of mastitis (P < 0.001), in particular mastitis caused by Streptococcus agalactiae and Staphylococcus aureus.


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