The US National Dairy FARM (Farmers Assuring Responsible Management) Program advocates the use of a simple 3-point locomotion scoring system to identify lame dairy cows.
Twenty-five professional hoof trimmers recorded hoof lesion occurrence in over 80,000 cows during regular trimming visits to 578 dairy farms in Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario. Digital dermatitis and claw horn disruption accounted for 84% of all lesions observed.
An excerpt from a video produced by the University of Zurich illustrates a claw trimming strategy aimed at achieving balance between inner and outer claws to minimize trauma to the corium.
A short video clip illustrating slow motion gait analysis reveals how walking on hard surfaces causes trauma to the claw leading to sole hemorrhage, white line lesions and sole ulcers.
A short video excerpt from a video produced by the University of Zurich describes the anatomy of the bovine hoof.
After more than 28 years working as a hoof trimmer in the dairy industry and, like many others, seeing the many changes within the dairy industry, I think a simple question has to be asked: “Why is lameness increasing as an issue?”
Most of my larger herds prefer to have a weekly, bi-weekly or monthly appointment. That is why I decided, as a hoof trimmer, I needed to help in the record-keeping department and decided to invest in a “chute-side” computer system to record the cows trimmed and the lesions observed on the hooves. Now, at the end of the trim session, there are detailed individual cow reports and easy-to-read herd summaries.
‘Hoof Signals’ provides all the practical knowledge a farmer needs to get hoof health on his dairy farm under control with easily understandable descriptions, clear drawings and lots of photographs.
The dairy cattle locomotion scoring system developed at Michigan State University and recommended by Zinpro is based on the observation of cows standing and walking (gait), with special emphasis on their back posture.
Sole ulcers are among the most common causes of lameness in dairy cattle. Why are they so common?