In last’s month’s article I focussed on horizontal fissures in dairy and beef cattle. There is a difference between horizontal and vertical fissures, and I want to explain the latter in more detail. A vertical fissure can be described as a fissure or crack on the claw. In the early stages this is only visible…
Seasonal Lameness. After the good rainy season we had this year, many grazing dairies experienced more lameness than usual. The types of lameness that we found in these situations were thin soles and toe ulcers.
There are two types of fissures, namely horizontal (discussed in this article) and vertical. Both types cause severe lameness and have their own risk factors and causes.
Bacterial Lameness. These lesions are the result of bacterial infections. Examples of conditions causing bacterial lameness are foot rot and digital dermatitis. In general, it is easier to treat bacterial lameness than mechanical lameness.
In parts 1 and 2 of this series I explained the factors that influence overgrown feet and how to identify the origin of the problem. I also touched on genetic disorders and how it re-manifests after a trim. This brings us to a frequently asked question: Is it ethical to trim feet?
The role that concrete plays in dairy cow lameness cannot be overemphasised. This is something that was explained in Part 2 of this series. To understand why dairy cows so often become lame in the hind feet, we need to study this aspect.
In part 1 of this series, I explained why we often see cattle with long claws and I touched on the principles that must be kept in mind whenever the subject of feet comes up.
In this series of different reasons why cows go lame, I want to mention a very important principle, namely, the role that concrete plays in lameness.
There have been many myths and different opinions in the past regarding the subject of the bovine hoof. Part of the reason why it is such a frequently discussed topic, is that it is so difficult to work on the feet of cattle. Unlike horses, cattle cannot be trained to lift one foot while standing on the other three legs. In fact, it is extremely difficult for cattle to stand on three legs, which is why specialised equipment is needed.
In association with The Dairy Mail and the MPO, we decided to plough back the knowledge gained over the past 24 years regarding lameness.