Successful reproductive programs require greater attention to detail than ever before, says Kevin McSweeney, veterinarian and owner of Bovine Reproductive Specialists, LLC, in Loveland, Colo. 

“Managing reproduction is unlike any other task on the dairy,” says McSweeney. To succeed, he says attention to detail has to border on the obsessive-compulsive. Applying new strategies to reproductive management — like intensive incorporation of ultrasound into your timed AI program — can pay big returns, but only if you are willing to change your mind-set of how you manage cows and people.

Synchronization programs require attention to detail, strict adherence to injection schedules and proper AI technique, he explains. Managing large numbers of cows within these programs also requires strict data entry and retrieval within dairy-software programs.

“No matter how well cows are started on these programs, if your or your employee compliance is inadequate, results will be inferior,” McSweeney says. “If you don’t strive for perfection in every aspect of reproductive management, you are doomed to poor results.”