Dairy Farmers; could you help protect your cows’ potential?

Have you heard of Imrestor?

We know that during the 60 days before to 30 days after calving, dairy cows experience a dip in their natural immunity, leaving them especially vulnerable to diseases such as mastitis, metritis and retained placenta. With serious cost consequences and implications for cow welfare and productivity, this makes the transition period one of the most challenging yet vital periods on a dairy farm.

Management and husbandry can go a long way to minimise and compensate for this dip in immunity around calving.  For example, ensuring excellent environmental hygiene and comfort, as well as controlling nutrition in terms of ration formulation and presentation, can have a huge impact on the diseases seen around calving time.

There is now also a novel product on the market that is proven to reduce the dip in natural immunity and has the potential to help reduce antibiotic usage on farm.

Developed by Elanco Animal Health, ImrestorTM (pegbovigrastim injection) effectively aids in restoring the cow’s natural defences by increasing the number and restoring the function of neutrophils, the primary type of white blood cell that recognizes and kills harmful bacteria.

It’s no secret that a successful transition period is vital for maximising productivity in the next lactation. We are all under increasing pressure to adopt a more proactive approach and particularly to reduce the use of antibiotics in livestock. This can be challenging in dairy herds, particularly around calving when cows are susceptible to multiple disease challenges while their defences are low. As part of a robust transition cow management system, Imrestor can help to restore a cow’s own natural immunity and strengthen her ability to defend against infection by a range of mastitis pathogens – thus helping to protect the cow against mastitis when she needs it most. 

Imrestor is administered with two injections – one seven days prior to the anticipated date of calving and the other within 24 hours after calving – with neither injection requiring a withdrawal period.

Imrestor is licensed to reduce mastitis in the first 30 days after calving. However, it is thought that it will have further reaching health benefits in terms of reducing other infections around calving time.

Two of our dairy farms have been using Imrestor since June 2016, and by the end of October we will have some pre and post treatment disease data available to share with our dairy farmers.

Adelle will be running a farmer discussion on transition cow management on 1st December, where we can discuss Imrestor further and our trial farmers can share their experiences with you all.  Look out for more details to follow.