It used to be that once you dried off a cow and gave her a dry-cow tube, you kicked her out to the dry pen without much thought about the facilities. However, dairy producers need to adopt a new mind-set when it comes to dry-cow care, says David Reid, Hazel Green, Wis., veterinarian and director of milk harvest science and technology for Bou-Matic.

Cows are highly susceptible to new infections immediately after dry-off, explains Reid. Therefore, you should give the same thought to facility cleanliness for dry cows as you do for your lactating herd.