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 Treating Mastitis
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maryjane

6892 Posts


Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  4:53:20 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I suppose I should say thank you to Fanci for giving me my first case of mastitis because now I have a plan for all my cows should it ever happen again. Also, I’m even more committed to my regimen to check the girls I’m milking daily using the California Mastitis Test.

Preventive care is best but what caught me off guard is the fact that when I purchased my 10-year old Fanci a few months ago, she was a “dry cow” and had been for several months prior to me bringing her here. So her coming down with a case of mastitis wasn’t even on my radar.

When I think back on it, she’s always had one teat that looked slightly larger. Now I know that once they’ve had a case of mastitis in a quarter, it usually stays somewhat enlarged and susceptible.

I knew I was taking a risk when I purchased her because the “She’s fine, no problems whatsoever” information I got came from someone who got her from someone who got her from someone. In other words, no vet records. I did go to the expense of paying a vet to check her first for all the diseases that are on my list: TB, Brucellosis, Q fever, Johne’s, BVD, and BLV. They’d also told me she was pregnant but that came back negative as well. Actually, I was fine with that because I wanted to put her with my bull. Her first natural heat came and went while being wined and dined by my bull. Negative preg check. Then, no more heats, so I had my vet administer a hormone protocol and I put her in with my bull again. Lots of action! I’ll know tomorrow afternoon if she’s pregnant. If she isn’t, I’ll keep trying because we did an ultrasound on her uterus and it looks fine. I’m committed to Fanci. If I can freshen her, she’ll give me plenty of Jersey milk not to mention I like her easy-going personality.

Easy-going until yesterday that is. On Monday morning early when I first took her to the vet, she was put into a squeeze chute and restrained. The goo was milked out (slightly gelled milk with a yellow tint to it). A couple of lumps were also detected (felt) in that swollen quarter with swollen teat. (I’m calling her Cyclops for now.)

The 3x/day, 5 day protocol my vet gave me was to clean the teat good with alcohol, inject a mixture of 10:1 distilled water (using a 60 mL syringe and special stainless steel “hollow needle’ to be boiled before each reuse) and Prepodyne into her quarter (several times/session) and massage it around in an effort to break up any clumps and then milk it out. She said, “Once you get permanent cysts or lumps that can’t be dissolved, the quarter will be prone to mastitis.” At the end of every session, I inject a syringe of “Today” (cephapirin sodium in disposable loaded syringes), making sure to squeeze the contents once injected gently up from the teat and up into the udder. Dip the teat in iodine. Done. All that 3x/day (photos further down).

We also started Fanci on 20 cc/day shots of penicillin until we get a culture back on her goo that might indicate we need to switch to a different antibiotic. We don’t have the results back yet.























Monday evening and Tuesday morning, piece of cake. I did as I was told and was close to getting liquid back out of her teat free of goo clumps.

Tuesday afternoon was a whole different story. When I milk my cows I use a simple hobble that deters movement. They can still kick back toward the wall or put their weight on the hobbled foot and kick the other hind foot but I’ve never had that happen. Fanci got to kicking so hard I gave up because all hell was breaking loose in my daily meditative, quiet place, the milking parlor. I called my vet and said, “I’m going to have to bring her down for the next few days of treatment (four more days left). I can give her the shots but she won’t let me get near that teat.”

I went to bed defeated but after a good night’s sleep, I woke up with a plan in mind. I hobbled hobbles together, bolted a few things down, found some climbing gear along with an extra chain to put behind her (Fanci is a big girl) and got ready. I put the flank rope on first to help deter kicking while I strapped her in. Meanwhile, I kept her bowl full of alfalfa pellets.









Once I see no more coagulation coming out, I can stop doing the udder flush, injecting only the “Today,” eventually doing it only once per day and then stopping altogether. I’ll do the penicillin for five days. I also clean and dip the other three teats just in case. I’ll continue to update this as I know more (the vet is coming at 8 am to check on things). But so far, so good!

I'm headed to another one of my granddaughters' basketball games.



But I'll leave you with this image of all things small, big, and wonderful.


MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~

NellieBelle

11035 Posts


Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  5:29:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thank you MaryJane for this information. Very thorough. I hope I never have to use it but certainly good to know and have, in case it would happen. (Enjoy the girls game.)

To laugh is human but to moo is bovine. Author Unknown
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Ron

4666 Posts
Ronnie
Peever SD
USA

Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  5:46:24 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Please bring us up to date. Being I don't have a vet here to even consult here who is very familiar with dairy animals. The today says administer once in twelve hours and then only 2 times. Kind of at a loss on this one. All info appreciated.

With a moo moo here and a moo moo there, here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo moo.

Edited by - Ron on Mar 04 2015 6:09:52 PM
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tcboweevil

338 Posts


Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  6:38:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ron, are you milking out the mastitis quarter into a separate container and the injecting the today into her empty quarter? If you are drinking the milk from her other quarters, I would milk the three good quarters first and then the bad quarter. Sometimes people will milk all four quarters but put a separate bucket under the infected quarter. You risk spreading the bacteria to the other teats.

So, if the infected quarter starts squirting milk because it is so full, I would just let it and NOT touch it until I have finished milking the good quarters. Then I would get a 5 gallon bucket and milk that bad quarter out completely, even massaging her quarter to make sure it is empty. If you can stand it, milking it out 3 times a day would make a big difference and heal it faster. The sugar in the milk feeds any bacteria that is infecting the quarter. I would inject the today treatment at least twice a day but only after emptying that quarter out. I would use the today treatment everyday until her udder milks out with NO sign of mastitis and then I would use it for two days afterwards just to be safe.

((((Hugs)))) Harriet.... ((((Hugs)))) Fanci - Get better soon, gals.

Edited by - tcboweevil on Mar 04 2015 6:41:09 PM
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Ron

4666 Posts
Ronnie
Peever SD
USA

Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  6:57:36 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Theresa. Have not started the today yet. I was hoping it would clear up on its own but has not. I have been milking the 3 unaffected quarters first then set the pail aside and work on the affected quarter. Everything is cleaned to avoid cross contamination. I really have not had any guidance on using the today at all other than the label..duhhhhhhh...so you are saying I can use it more than once in 24 hours? Right now I milk out about 2/3 of a quart in the morning and 1/2 quart in the afteernoon. First squirts are the yellow looking goo then in sort of clears up some. That part of her udder is firm not soft like the rest but not hot and She don't fuss when I handle Her or it. I had planned on starting the Today in the next day when temps finally get above zero at night and above freezing daytime. This has been going on at least 6 weeks or so. All help is so much appreciated. Never dealt with this.

With a moo moo here and a moo moo there, here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo moo.
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tcboweevil

338 Posts


Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  7:22:10 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yes, you can definitely use the today more than once. Make sure it is the today infusion for cows in milk. There is one type that is to be used as you dry her up. The two different types have different antibiotics and the one for dry cows means 60 days before you can drink the milk. Definitely don't want to confuse the two. They usually come in a box of about 10 tubes. You probably should start the today as soon as the weather allows. Milking out that quarter completely and often ( 3 x a day if possible) will keep the infection at a minimum. Infusing twice a day will treat the infection. I am glad there is no tenderness in her udder. I just don't think it will heal without the today treatment. I think you're doing great. The today infusion works locally so each quarter is separate. If the infection should ever spread (and I don't think it will reading your milking techniques), treat each quarter separately. If she gets worse, you may have to treat the infection with an antibiotic shot. I think it will clear up with just the today. I hope this helps.
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Mike

1667 Posts
Mike
Argyle WI
United States of America

Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  7:31:13 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Very good information! Thank you all. As a note, some very hot water taken out to the milking shed along with some cloth towels. Wet a towel, squeeze it out a bit, then massage the quarter with the hot towel......repeat and repeat again. Ten or fifteen minutes of heat, several times a day works wonders. Along with Today and emptying that quarter as often as you can. Three times a day is good, more is gooder if she'll put up with it. The warmth 'should' calm her down too, as well as helping soften the goo and hasten the expelling of said goo.
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Ron

4666 Posts
Ronnie
Peever SD
USA

Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  7:35:01 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This sucks. Poor cow. Live and learn. At least this cow is very calm. I think with a treat in front of her you could do open heart surgery.

With a moo moo here and a moo moo there, here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo moo.

Edited by - Ron on Mar 04 2015 7:36:12 PM
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chives

313 Posts
Victoria
Shelton WA
usa

Posted - Mar 04 2015 :  7:51:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thank you for the great information and pictures. Information is always a big welcome.

A cow is the heart of a farm
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Sydney2015

1156 Posts


Posted - Mar 05 2015 :  06:53:50 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
MaryJane, that's very helpful. Now we know.

A good laugh overcomes more difficulties and dissipates more dark clouds than any other one thing - Laura Ingalls Wilder

I live on a small farm of seventy acres called Green Forest Farm, with 10 horses, a donkey, 5 beef cows, 2 beef heifers, 3 Hereford heifers, around 60 chickens, 8 dogs, my amazing cow, AppleButter, and her little Jersey calf HoneyButter!
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txbikergirl

3197 Posts


Posted - Mar 05 2015 :  1:59:46 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
this is like a whole separate course for milkmaid university. thank you for this. you know what they say about the teacher appearing when the student is ready...

Firefly Hollow Farm , our little farmstead. Farmgirl living in the green piney woods of East Texas on 23 acres with a few jerseys, too many chickens, a pair of pugs and my Texan hubby (aka "lover boy")
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maryjane

6892 Posts


Posted - Mar 05 2015 :  7:12:06 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Today's update about "Today."

My vet said this morning, "We rarely see only one application of Today clear up a case of mastitis." The label would have you think otherwise but if you use it liberally and intuitively, it sounds like more is better in this case. When you buy it, it comes by the box anyway.

When a quarter gets infected, we should think of it as a giant boil or abscess or perhaps a cavity full of several/many abscesses/boils. We're all familiar with the concept of lancing a boil first before treatment. Well, that's the idea behind the iodine flush before treatment, or at the very least, milking the quarter out first before treatment. In other words, get the pus out. Pus: a yellow-white, more or less viscid substance produced by suppuration and found in abscesses, sores, etc., consisting of a liquid plasma in which white blood cells are suspended.

If you caught the mastitis in time and you don't feel any lumps anywhere in the quarter, then you're okay to milk it out two times/day and inject Today after each draining of the quarter. As long as you're still seeing any pus at all when you drain it, you need to continue the same routine until you no longer see any pus. When that finally happens, inject one last application of Today and then wait a couple of days and do a California Mastitis Test on the fluid you milk out.

The purpose of the iodine flush is to use it to break up any lumps you feel. The Today works better when it isn't having to deal with lumps and bumps. But remember, you most certainly don't want to be injecting any kind of new bacteria into her udder. Sterile stainless steel needle, syringes, etc. and rubbing alcohol before any insertion. Gloved hands. If she's in milk and you feel lumps, milk her out entirely, flush it with iodine, milk again, Today. Dip teat in iodine. Repeat 3x/day if necessary.

Fanci is getting her quarter drained 2x/day right now along with two applications of Today. Until I drain her and see zero pus (I only see some when I first start draining her so it's definitely improving), that's the plan. We still don't have the test results back on her culture, so I'm still doing the shots of penicillin.

Stay tuned. I'm new to this but I do have access to a vet Ron. Also, today was easy. Didn't use any kind of hobble at all. She didn't lift her foot even once.

MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~
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Ron

4666 Posts
Ronnie
Peever SD
USA

Posted - Mar 05 2015 :  7:46:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks Mary Jane.mthe vets here are mainly dealing with beef cattle and each ranch runs hundres of head. To stop and bother with one or two dairy cows here or there is not where they or the ranchers are at. If any animal shows any sign of issue, cull it move on. I understand the economics for sure.

Anyway, thank you for gathering the information. I gladly offer any help If I can with paying the vet bill for the information sharing! Thank you again.

With a moo moo here and a moo moo there, here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo moo.
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Mike

1667 Posts
Mike
Argyle WI
United States of America

Posted - Mar 05 2015 :  8:44:55 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thank you very much indeed. The explanation is very Newman Turner-ish. He viewed most disease as a catarrhal type infection, affecting the mucous membrane from stem to stern....mouth, udder, anus and all that. Normally associated with the respiratory tract, it does include the above mentioned.

Did your vet have any recommendations on warming the affected quarter to aid in reducing the infection? That came from years ago, when I was in high school. Our ag prof/teacher recommended it.

God bless you and thank you for all you do for us.
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maryjane

6892 Posts


Posted - Mar 06 2015 :  05:10:02 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I think warming the udder would be a good thing. It's just not very practical for me. Bed rest, heating pad, DIAPER, sure! I use warm water when I clean an udder but the longer they're in for "service" the more likely it is you're going to end up with pee and poop all over everything you're trying to keep clean. Fanci's load is HUGE.

I need to find time to perfect my cow dung-aree idea so I can be dun with dung during certain procedures and also during travel.

MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~
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Mike

1667 Posts
Mike
Argyle WI
United States of America

Posted - Mar 06 2015 :  05:15:21 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Just put 'DUN'garees on the cows!
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Mike

1667 Posts
Mike
Argyle WI
United States of America

Posted - Mar 06 2015 :  05:16:42 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Drat, I type faster than I read..... Sorry, MJ...... you should trademark that one!
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maryjane

6892 Posts


Posted - Mar 06 2015 :  05:37:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Just happy to see your trademark bearded smile first thing in the morning.

MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~
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NellieBelle

11035 Posts


Posted - Jun 05 2015 :  5:55:33 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ditto. Thank you so much for the information and explanation MaryJane.

To laugh is human but to moo is bovine. Author Unknown
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maryjane

6892 Posts


Posted - Jun 06 2015 :  05:41:53 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Update on Fanci: At this point her udder doesn't have any lumps left in it at all and her formerly infected teat is the same size as the others. I have to be very strict about keeping my new little Ester Lily away from her because if they're together for even a few minutes, Fanci encourages Ester Lily to latch on and then within a few days that troublesome teat of hers isn't looking right and sure enough, it's starting to have a little bit of gelled milk when I extract whatever is brewing in it. So, I injected one last dose of Quarter Master in it and then in all four of her teats I injected a Dry Cow Intramammary Teat Sealant (made by Zoetis) that I'll need to milk out just before she gives birth in November. I'm pleased with her prognosis and feel like I learned a lot from her. I know she's going to love being a mom and I'm going to love having a one-cow-dairy come November.

MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~
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Ron

4666 Posts
Ronnie
Peever SD
USA

Posted - Jun 06 2015 :  05:51:41 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You'll be swimming in milk.....finally got Harriet down to once a day,two gallons..lots of cream...big girls are kinda fun also ...sure you don't need the next guernsey heifer?.. Lol...

With a moo moo here and a moo moo there, here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo moo.
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maryjane

6892 Posts


Posted - Jun 06 2015 :  06:23:18 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
It's tempting Ron but one of the business books I read that impacted me the most was FOCUS:)

MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~
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Ron

4666 Posts
Ronnie
Peever SD
USA

Posted - Jun 06 2015 :  06:52:27 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I agree! I always focused on diversity! Lol..( sorry, I'm a smarty pants )

With a moo moo here and a moo moo there, here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo moo.
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txbikergirl

3197 Posts


Posted - Apr 27 2016 :  7:25:54 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
about six weeks ago i found out that someone i really trusted about cows medicated their cows to dry them up. i am not trying to be judgmental here, so i apologize if any of you prefer that method, but just like humans i think mother nature knows best so i think it is better to try to let mother nature take care of things.

the reason i was shocked about this person is that they hold themselves out to be more natural and do things simpler, so this seemed so out of character for them. but this is why i found this interesting... they were now seeing multiple cases of mastitis (which they hadn't seen before) and it was almost becoming an epidemic. one after another, as the cows treated to dry off calved and freshened the mastitis blew up. so now there were in the cycle of antibiotics, which was also hit and miss and not successful. and we are talking about people that in the past three years had only seen a case of mastitis... until growing their herd and going the medical dry off route this year. they actually had a cow DIE of mastitis... no kidding. that freaks me out.

i told them about mastoblast. they had never heard of it. i saw them this week, five weeks later after they acquired mastoblast. it is working wonders for them, and they are even using it proactively now as the momma calves to get ahead of the problem. no more antibiotics in the herd - isn't that fantastic? i am not anti-antibiotic ;> just think to avoid the health issues altogether is better for everyone involved.

another thing, these same people don't give vitamin c powder. or use the CMT daily. its amazing to me how many natural and successful things are shared here on HJO that makes the health of the cows simple to maintain. and how there are still many people without the knowledge. thanks everyone for sharing all this with me, it is just so wonderful. i appreciate y'all greatly.


Firefly Hollow Farm , our little farmstead. Farmgirl living in the green piney woods of East Texas on 23 acres with a few jerseys, too many chickens, a pair of pugs and my Texan hubby (aka "lover boy")
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NellieBelle

11035 Posts


Posted - Apr 28 2016 :  10:16:28 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That is amazing and encouraging news Cindy. I'm not anti-antibiotic either, but like my own health, I prefer to avoid them if at all possible and choose that route for my animals too. I feel through the years we've become too dependent on antibiotic and medical solutions to problems, if given the body a chance, it has the ability to mend itself on it's own. If we interfere when not necessary, the body has to figure out how to work with the medications and changes that it has encountered. (some cases the intrusion makes things worse). The body is an amazing thing, be it cow, human, cat, dog, etc. There are instances where that simply won't work and antibiotic therapy may be the best option. We all want what is best for our animals and to optimize their health. I feel I need to weigh the pros and cons carefully before any medical interventions involving medicines or antibiotics. This is my own way of doing things. Not suggesting that's the way others should do.

To laugh is human but to moo is bovine. Author Unknown
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