Investigate high SCC

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You can’t fix a high somatic cell count problem until you find the source. The parlor is a good place to start your investigation. Dale Moore, veterinarian at the University of California-Davis, found these parlor risk factors during an investigation of high SCC:

  • Heavy use of cooling in the wash pen and parlor, so that cows enter the parlor still wet.
  • No forestripping done, which leads to missed mastitis cases.
  • Too few people to help with milking.
  • No pre-dipping.
  • A lot of defecation in the parlor and reluctance to enter by first-lactation animals.
  • Teats still dirty on arrival to the parlor.
  • Teat-end lesions.
  • Individual paper towels not used.
  • Water condensation on equipment and udders.
  • Excess water use in the parlor.
  • Variation in unit on-time.
  • Units remain on for up to two minutes after end of milk flow, indicating automatic-takeoff problems.


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