Hidden (subclinical) mastitis in a cow: symptoms and treatment

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Among the diseases of the udder special danger is hidden mastitis in cows. His cunning is the absence of obvious external signs, in the end - it is very difficult to notice pathology in time. Particularly susceptible animals farms, which use machine milking. According to statistics, up to 20% of the cows, who are not examined regularly, suffer from imperceptible from the outside, but inflammation hidden inside. The milk obtained from them is unsuitable for consumption, which causes significant losses to the owners.

Cage between life and death

Hidden mastitis in a cow is somewhat different from the obvious forms of the disease and is a serious danger to the animal. When the enemy is secret, it is much more difficult to fight him.

But, no matter how the pathology is hidden behind the deceptive external well-being of a cow, it is possible to recognize hidden (or subclinical) mastitis. An experienced veterinarian, when examined, is quite capable of finding fingers in the tissues of the mammary gland with his fingers. Usually characterized by narrowing of the nipple canal and thickening of the walls of the nipple. And the attentive hostess will certainly pay attention to the fact that the tanks themselves at the nurse became somewhat smaller.

In cow's milk, which is subclinical, that is, latent mastitis, the content of casein, lactose, calcium is reduced, but the amount of chlorides is increased. In no case should this product be included in the total yield. Otherwise, the entire volume will become unusable.

Such milk cannot be drunk or used to make cheeses and milk products (kefir, cottage cheese, sour cream, ryazhenka).

Between death and life

If the cow’s farms do not regularly make checks on the latent form of mastitis, the amount of milk produced in the udder can significantly decrease. In the worst cases, there is agalactia - a milestone when it is not present at all. This disease is even more difficult to treat than inflammation of the udder.

A caring owner should not rely only on the possible visible signs of the disease. Even when they are not there, it is necessary to regularly take samples of milk received from the cow. If its acidity and the number of trace elements are reduced, then this is very characteristic of udder inflammation. To conduct such a study is possible in the laboratory.

As a result of inflammatory processes occurring in the mammary glands of the cow, the number of somatic cells increases there due to the increasing flow of leukocytes. If in one milliliter of milk their index is 700-900 thousand, then this indicates the presence of latent mastitis. The normal result is 250 thousand units. Such a quantity in the yield is quite acceptable and even necessary.

Caused in the udder disease pathogens have a negative effect on the body, disrupting the breast feeding and the sensitivity of the nerve endings. The latter enter the state between death and life, the so-called parabiosis.

"Roads" of pathogens

Among the causes of hidden mastitis in cattle in the first place you can put the observance of sanitation during milking, especially with machine. A dirty machine can become a peddler of the disease. Therefore, it is very important that the barns and milking devices are kept clean.

Other reasons for the active entry of pathogens into the nipple canal include:

  • raw and cold stalls (any catarrhal disease becomes an assistant for germs that carry mastitis);
  • udder injuries, when the pathway for pathogens (streptococcus, staphylococcus) is open through existing wounds;
  • weak immunity of the cow;
  • udder shape, as an anatomical feature (for example, a sagging, udder like a goat or nipples that look like funnels).

Poor living conditions and unbalanced or inadequate nutrition of animals is a direct path to mastitis, in particular, to its hidden form. Cows are most vulnerable to calving and individuals approaching the end of reproductive age.

How to identify inflammation

It happens that over time, the underlying disease passes into some obvious form. Then it is quite realistic to notice the symptoms of a particular pathology. In the articles "On serous mastitis in cows" and "Catarrhal mastitis in cow" we talk about these types of diseases, their symptoms and treatment.

Today, one of the most accessible and effective methods for detecting subclinical form of mastitis is diagnostics using control plates MKP-1 and MKP-2. For analysis, take 1 ml of milk from each udder portion. Samples are in different test bowls, each of them are added reagents - 1 ml. This may be, for example, a solution of dimastine (5%) or mastidine (2%). The liquids are thoroughly stirred. The result is visible to the naked eye for 15 seconds.

If inflammation in the udder of the cow is present, then you will notice either a change in the color of the substance, or you will see a formed clot similar to jelly. It is easy to grope it with a stick and pull it out of the hole.

Not to doubt

In addition to the above, some specialists use another method for the diagnosis of latent mastitis. Such a safety net makes it possible to verify the diagnosis in the diagnosis.

This requires only milk, a refrigerator and laboratory tubes. In this case, the analysis is taken only from suspicious parts of the udder of the cow, that is, those indicated by the first test. Filled tubes are placed in the refrigerator for 16-17 hours. No way in the freezer. The temperature of the test is from 5 to 10 degrees.

After the required period, you should carefully consider the result. From a healthy proportion of udder milk will be white or slightly bluish, without any sediment. For the part affected by mastitis, sediment, viscosity and the presence of flakes are characteristic.

It is imperative that such tests be carried out 11-14 days after the cow starts and before calving - 10-12 days.

Electronics will help

If the farm contains a large number of livestock, no matter how agile the vets are, checking a thousand or more cows for hidden mastitis "manually" will be difficult physically. Modern science has somewhat eased the task by putting electronics at the service of man and animals. To identify the disease, it is no longer necessary to use any reagents, no need to interfere with the wand or wait for the result 15 hours a day. The device "Mastiton" does not need it.

It is enough to pour the investigated product into its cup so as to close the electrodes. After pressing the desired button, the result is ready in a second. It is displayed on the screen, it remains only to write it in a special journal.

The figure of up to 450 units indicates high quality of milk. Indications above 600 - the cow is sick. And all the data between these numbers indicate the likelihood of the disease and requires a more precise diagnosis. Then the veterinarians examine the dynamics of evidence in different time intervals, watching the cow.

When using the electronic device "Mastiton" there should be an individual approach to each result. After all, the indicators can affect the fat content of milk, and the conditions of the cow. In addition, after the animal has recovered, the device can give out inflammatory indications for a long time, although the disease has already passed.

Examine the cow regularly

Remember that agalactia or hypogalactia, occurring against the background of a latent form of udder inflammation, is very difficult to heal. Regular examinations of cattle in order to detect subclinical mastitis make it possible to start treatment at early stages and protect healthy animals from the disease in time.

Sick cows are separated from calves and placed in a separate stall. It should be warm and dry. Machine milking stops, milk is delivered only by hand. Udder massage, warming dressings with camphor ointment and paraffin baths are also shown.

Medications for the treatment of hidden mastitis in a cow will be prescribed by a doctor. If this is not possible, then an antibiotic can be punctured intramuscularly, for example, Bilozin-200 at the rate of 0.5 ml for every 10 kg of cattle weight. The drug is used once a day for seven days.

From the special syringe directly into the nipples enter "Mastiet Forte." After that, the cattle are carefully issued. Can be treated and proven "grandmother's" way. The introduction of fresh milk from a healthy cow into the canal gives good results. It will take about 150 ml. This procedure can be repeated up to three times a day. In case of pain, Novocainic blockade is made. When all the above manipulations are performed, the treatment of subclinical mastitis in a cow is usually successful.

If using the article you figured out questions about hidden mastitis in cows, please put a Like.

In the commentary, tell about your own experience in dealing with this disease or support the discussion on the topic with other readers.

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