Fresh Cow 0 - 21 days

Fresh Cow

The transition from late gestation to early lactation is the most challenging time during the lactation cycle. Physiological and metabolic changes disrupt homeostatic mechanisms and can result in metabolic problems. The cow drops in body weight at calving as the calf and placental tissues are lost. Body stores are mobilized because energy intake will not meet the energy requirements for lactation.

The cow begins lactation and transitions to a lactation diet. She has a major drop in body weight.

Palatability and high nutrient density are important.

Protection from rain, wind and heat is important.

Heifer calves are raised separately in hutches or in group housing.

Calf is removed at birth. Colostrum is provided by bottle for passive transfer of immunoglobulins.