A negative-DCAD diet fed for 21 or 42 days during the dry period can have positive effects on postpartum dry matter intake, calcium homeostasis and milk production, according to new research reported in the September edition of the Journal of Dairy Science.

There’s agreement that anionic supplementation for 21 days prepartum provides benefits in postpartum performance compared to feeding positive-DCAD diets.

Additionally, 42 days of negative DCAD feeding did not have detrimental effects on postpartum performance in multiparous cows and may provide similar or increased postpartum protection against hypocalcemia and metabolic disorders compared with 21 days of negative DCAD feeding, researchers said. Yet, “future research with a greater number of experimental units should be conducted before clear recommendations for extended feeding of negative DCAD can be made,” they said.

Read the abstract.