Healthy, content cows.
Healthy and content cows produce wholesome, nutritious milk. Dairy farmers work with employees and veterinarians to ensure cows are well cared for and in the best possible condition. Veterinarians regularly visit dairy farms for preventative medicine, check-ups and prompt treatment of illness.
Every part of the farm is aimed at making dairy cows comfortable. Cows spend most of their time inside dry, comfortable barns. Free-stall barns provide shelter from the elements, and the environment is controlled for cow’s safety. There is plenty of space to eat, drink, exercise and sleep wherever and whenever they want. Floors are made with added traction that provides dairy cows the security they need to move about without slipping. Clean, comfortable bedding is provided for the cows to sleep and lie on.
A dairy cow never has to look far for a nutritious meal. Feed and fresh water is available around the clock, allowing cows to eat and drink whenever they want. Nutritionists and professional consultants help plan a balanced menu that is nutrient-rich and includes the proper amounts of fiber, protein, and fat.
Dairy cows receive regular pedicures just like people. The hoof trimmer trims hooves to keep cows comfortable. They are also on the lookout for hoof injury and disease, and will treat these problems if they are found.
Herd Health Plan
Dairy farms may keep a Herd Health Plan developed under the guidance of their veterinarian. The plan includes standards for handling newborns and sick cows, as well as animal health disease prevention, and biosecurity measures.
Cows get sick just like people and sometimes need medicine. Medicine is used under the guidance of a veterinarian and only when needed to relieve pain and to prevent or cure illnesses.
Cows that receive medicine are separated from the milking herd and their milk is discarded until the milk tests free of medicine. All milk must meet high standards for quality and safety. Dairy farmers are penalized and milk is discarded if it doesn’t meet these standards.