Acta Vet. Brno 2018, 87: 115-118

The effect of post-calving pain management with carprofen on stress, reproduction, and milk yield in cattle

Ramūnas Antanaitis, Aloyzas Januškauskas, Arūnas Rutkauskas, Henrikas Žilinskas

Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Veterinary Academy, Large Animal Clinic, Kaunas, Lithuania

Received July 6, 2017
Accepted May 15, 2018

Previous research has shown that the administration of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in postpartum cattle has the potential to be a viable way to improve productivity and reproduction, although further research is necessary to optimise recommendations for producers. The aim of this research was to determine the influence of carprofen on dairy cows using a number of different indices including stress, reproduction, and milk yield data. The experiment was carried out on 100 first-lactation dairy cows. The animals were divided into two groups. The treatment group (TG, n = 50) was given a subcutaneous injection of Rimadyl Cattle® (50 mg/ml of carprofen) up to one hour after calving. At the same time, the control group (CG, n = 50) was given an injection of 0.9% NaCl. Blood tests were taken 2, 24, and 48 h after calving and tested using the fluorescence enzyme immunoassay method for cortisol analysis. At 305 days, the total milk yield was recorded for each cow. A computerised herd management program was used for data registration and analysis. Pregnancy was tested by ultrasound between 30 and 35 days after insemination. A subcutaneous injection of carprofen (1.4 mg per 1 kg of body weight) given one hour after parturition in first-lactation cows reduced the level of cortisol within 48 h after calving. During lactation (305 days in milk), the intervention increased the milk yield (252 kg) and pregnancy rates (8.5%), reduced the calving interval (43 days), and decreased the somatic cell count during the second, third, and fourth months after calving.


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