Managing a dairy cow’s diet three weeks either side of calving is key to a high-production lactation. Feeding a specifically formulated diet, such as Leadfeed or Leadfeed plus BioChlor®, three weeks prior to calving, ensures that the cow’s rumen is prepared for efficient production straight after calving. These feeds also assist in managing the DCAD levels in the diet prior to calving, which reduces the chance of milk fever, a condition which can result in cows “going down”, and retained placentas postpartum. Both these issues cause enormous stress to the cow, require treatment and negatively impact lactate production, therefore, prevention is the best option. Once the cow calves, her energy requirement increases significantly in order to develop and sustain high milk production. Traditionally, farmers will transition calved cows on to a high energy (starch) diet over a 10-14 day period to reduce the possibility of acidosis. The technology used in Milne Feeds’ range of dairy products has re-written the rule book. This technology allows high-producing cows to be fed their maximum energy ration within 3-4 days of calving, resulting in higher and earlier peak lactation production. Dean Maughan was recently chatting with dairy farmer, Dale Hanks, about how he manages the transition of his cows into his herd. Watch the interview below to hear more of Dale’s experiences.