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Recognizing Lame Cows Early

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Dr. Proudfoot joins us to discuss early identification of lameness in dairy cattle. Learn about how the prevalence of lameness is often underestimated, how you can improve detection, and some automated tools to aid in early detection that are currently in development.

See the full presentation on YouTube at www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ho6wh-Ns6YM

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Recognizing Lame Cows Early

  1. 1. Recognizing Lame Cows Early Katy Proudfoot, MSc, PhD The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine
  2. 2. Lameness in dairy cattle • Lameness considered the most important welfare concern • >1,500 articles on lameness in dairy cows since 1990 • Lameness cases are not decreasing 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 1990 1992 1994 1996 1998 2000 2002 2004 2006 2008 2010 2012 2014 2016 Numberofjournalarticles Ventura et al., 2015
  3. 3. What’s the problem? • The research is not getting to the producers? • The research is not practical or applied enough? • Producers don’t see lameness as a problem? • Other problems take more priority (mastitis)? Leach et al., 2010
  4. 4. What’s the problem? • The research is not getting to the producers? • The research is not practical or applied enough? • Producers don’t see lameness as a problem? • Other problems take more priority (mastitis)? Leach et al., 2010
  5. 5. How many cows are lame? Producer = 8% lameness Researcher = 25% lameness Espejo et al., 2006
  6. 6. How many cows are lame? Producer = 7% lameness Researcher = 36% lameness Leach et al., 2010
  7. 7. How many cows are lame? Producer = 9% lameness Researcher = 22% lameness Fabian et al., 2014
  8. 8. Why the differences? • How they pick out lame cows (e.g., different definitions) • How they are trained • Where they are looking for the lame cows • Which and how many cows they are looking at
  9. 9. Why the differences? • How they pick out lame cows (e.g., different definitions) • How they are trained • Where they are looking for the lame cows • Which and how many cows they are looking at
  10. 10. How do we pick out lame cows? 1. Look for obvious signs of limping
  11. 11. How do we pick out lame cows? 1. Look for obvious signs of limping 2. Locomotion scoring, more subtle signs Score Category Description 1 Normal Normal gait. Level back posture while walking. 2 Mildly lame Normal gait. Level back posture while standing, but back arched while walking. 3 Moderately lame Gait affected, short striding. Back arched while standing and walking. 4 Lame Back always arched. Only one deliberated step at a time, one or more limbs favored. 5 Severely lame Extreme reluctance to bear weight one or more limbs. Sprecher et al., 1997
  12. 12. How do we pick out lame cows? 1. Look for obvious signs of limping 2. Locomotion scoring, more subtle signs 3. Automated methods (pedometers, robotic milkers, etc.)
  13. 13. Locomotion scoring
  14. 14. Locomotion scoring • Scoring systems that categorize cows based on the level of severity of lameness • 3, 4 and 5 point scoring systems • Requires training to learn the scoring system
  15. 15. HEAD BOB IMPROPER WEIGHT BEARING (‘LIMPING’) ASYMMETRIC STEPS JOINT FLEXION SWINGING IN/ OUT BACK ARCH TRACKING UP WALKING SPEED
  16. 16. Example 1
  17. 17. 5-point Scoring System Score Category Description 1 Normal Normal gait. Level back posture while walking. 2 Mildly lame Normal gait. Level back posture while standing, but back arched while walking. 3 Moderately lame Gait affected, short striding. Back arched while standing and walking. 4 Lame Back always arched. Only one deliberated step at a time, one or more limbs favored. 5 Severely lame Extreme reluctance to bear weight one or more limbs. Sprecher et al., 1997
  18. 18. 3-point Scoring System Score Description 1 Sound with a healthy gait 2 Favors a limb while walking 3 Severely lame, trying to avoid bearing weight on limb National Dairy F.A.R.M. Program
  19. 19. Example 2
  20. 20. 5-point Scoring System Score Category Description 1 Normal Normal gait. Level back posture while walking. 2 Mildly lame Normal gait. Level back posture while standing, but back arched while walking. 3 Moderately lame Gait affected, short striding. Back arched while standing and walking. 4 Lame Back always arched. Only one deliberated step at a time, one or more limbs favored. 5 Severely lame Extreme reluctance to bear weight one or more limbs. Sprecher et al., 1997
  21. 21. 3-point Scoring System National Dairy F.A.R.M. Program Score Description 1 Sound with a healthy gait 2 Favors a limb while walking 3 Severely lame, trying to avoid bearing weight on limb
  22. 22. Example 3
  23. 23. 5-point Scoring System Score Category Description 1 Normal Normal gait. Level back posture while walking. 2 Mildly lame Normal gait. Level back posture while standing, but back arched while walking. 3 Moderately lame Gait affected, short striding. Back arched while standing and walking. 4 Lame Back always arched. Only one deliberated step at a time, one or more limbs favored. 5 Severely lame Extreme reluctance to bear weight one or more limbs. Sprecher et al., 1997
  24. 24. 3-point Scoring System National Dairy F.A.R.M. Program Score Description 1 Sound with a healthy gait 2 Favors a limb while walking 3 Severely lame, trying to avoid bearing weight on limb
  25. 25. When and Where to Locomotion Score • Flat, non-slip surface • Alleyway where you can see one cow walking at a time • Alleyway as cows come out of the milking parlor (not when they are going into the parlor) • For dry cows, a clean dry alleyway • Ideal to sample the whole herd daily, but other sampling strategies may be more practical for large herds
  26. 26. Automated Measures of Lameness
  27. 27. 3D Accelerometers • High lying time may indicate lameness (Ito et al., 2010; Juarez et al., 2003) • Lame cows have longer lying bouts and more variable lying bout duration (Ito et al., 2010) • Low lying time, especially perching, may be a risk factor for lameness (Galindo and Broom, 2000; Proudfoot et al., 2010)
  28. 28. 3D Accelerometers • Asymmetrical steps (Chapinal et al., 2011) • Walking speed? (Chapinal et al., 2011) • Lame cows lay down ~20 minutes earlier than sound cows after feed is delivered (Yunta et al., 2012) • Lying behavior of lame cows depends on stall surface: lame cows on deep-bedded spend more time lying, those on mattresses do not (Cook et al., 2004; Ito et. al., 2010)
  29. 29. Robotic Milkers • Lame cows had fewer visits (Borderas et al., 2008) • Load cells under each leg may be able to detect changes in weight bearing (Pastell et al., 2008)
  30. 30. Other Automated Methods • 3D video detection (Viazzi et al., 2014) A combination of sensors: • Milk yield, neck activity, and ruminating time (Van Hertem et al., 2013) • Milk yield and feeding behavior (Kramer et al., 2009)
  31. 31. Online Resources
  32. 32. YouTube Videos • National Dairy F.A.R.M. Program: “How to Locomotion Score a Dairy Cow (2013)” • USDA National Animal Health Monitoring Survey: “NAHMS Lameness Detection Video” • DeLaval: “Do You Know How to Score Locomotion” • DairyNZ: “DairyNZ Healthy Hoof Lameness Scoring” • DairyCo: “DairyCo Mobility Score"
  33. 33. Apps The Dairyland Initiative http://www.vetmed.wisc.edu/dms/fapm/apps/ls.htm https://www.zinpro.com/lameness/dairy/locomotion-scoring ZINPRO
  34. 34. Thanks!

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