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Sand Bedding Quality Analysis for Dairy Cattle

Friday, December 14, 2018

Sand is considered the gold standard in dairy cattle bedding for cow comfort and reduced environmental exposure to mastitis pathogens. Quality Milk Production Services now offers particle size analysis and organic matter content in addition to its standard environmental microbial analysis for sand bedding.

Active management of sand bedding includes the screening of new sand sources and the monitoring of recycled sand to ensure that particle size and organic matter content remain within ideal ranges. High organic matter content breeds mastitis-causing organisms, and a high percentage of large or very fine sand particles can also negatively affect herd health. Sand particle sizes greater than 3 mm increase the risk of lameness, while very fine particles contribute to bedding compaction, hock and joint injury, and greatly diminished cow comfort that can significantly reduce milk production.

Particle size and organic matter analysis complements the standard microbial analysis to offer veterinarians and herd managers a more complete picture of their cows' environmental hygiene.