Post-mortem exams are one of the most under-utilized tools on the dairy, says Frank Garry, veterinarian at the Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Routine post-mortem exams can give you insight into the disease status of your herd, or alert you to any underlying problems.

Post-mortems don't have to be done by a veterinarian. A trained staff member at your dairy can perform them and then discuss the findings with the herd veterinarian.

Here's why you should consider doing them:

  • Simple to perform.
  • Retrieves value from a death loss.
  • Facilitates sampling for testing and monitoring.
  • Provides another type of routine monitoring for disease control.
  • Improves understanding of how disease affects your animals.
  • Encourages communication with your herd veterinarian.