Editor’s Note: The following information is an excerpt from an article written by Heather Dann in the November 2012 Miner Institute Farm Report.

Subclinical ketosis (SCK) is having a tremendous negative impact on our dairy cows, according to a recent presentation at the Cornell Nutrition Conference by Dr. (Garrett) Oetzel from the University of Wisconsin’s School of Veterinary Medicine.

By definition, SCK is an excess of circulating ketone bodies in the blood without clinical signs of ketosis (i.e. decreased appetite, weight loss, and decreased milk production). The lack of clinical signs makes it difficult to detect SCK. However, using blood beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHBA: a ketone body) testing to measure the incidence or prevalence of SCK in a herd is a powerful and useful clinical tool.

For more information, read “What is subclinical ketosis costing you?” in the November 2012 Miner Institute Farm Report.

Source: W.H. Miner Agricultural Research Institute