Drove Farm Vets has a whole team approach on farm when it comes to maximising cow health and productivity.
By analysing milk recording data, farm records and utilising the skills of everyone who has input on the farm, we aim to improve animal health and welfare, by managing and preventing disease.
Well managed fertility is crucial to a profitable dairy farm.
With the average cost being £4 per cow for each day open after the voluntary waiting period, regular fertility visits are paramount to cow productivity. These routine fertility visits not only provide pre-breeding checks, pregnancy diagnosis using mobile ultrasound scanners and fertility treatment but also regular opportunities to analyse fertility and more on farm.
Drove Farm Vets fertility service can analyse milk recording data to provide a bespoke monthly fertility report. Key performance indicators from these reports are anonymously benchmarked against other farms as part of a our Dairy Early Warning (DEW) Club.
Drove Farm Vets Embryo transfer and repeat breeder services compliment our fertility services.
Mastitis and high somatic cell count (SCC) issues can be financially challenging, time consuming and affect morale on farm.
Drove Farm Vets are registered providers of the AHDB mastitis control plan, a proven evidence based approach to mastitis prevention and control. The plan offers a cost effective solution by using farm specific information to identify the main factors contributing to mastitis on farm which enables advice to be given on practical improvements.
Drove Farm Vets can advise on all aspects that may contribute to mastitis problems, parlour routine, udder health, cow comfort and dry cow management.
Cattle lameness is one of the most significant welfare and productivity issues in dairy farming in the UK.
Depending upon the specific problem and its severity, lameness is likely to have a large impact on a cow's performance in terms of yield, fertility and longevity. The average cost of a lameness incident is in the region of £180, which equates to a financial loss of £15,000 for an average sized herd at current national levels of incidence.
Drove Farm Vets can provide services from treating individual lame cows to herd investigation.
By assessing lameness incidence in the herd via mobility scoring and analysing farm records, advice can be given on how to reduce lameness on your farm.
Drove Farm Vets provide foot trimming and mobility scoring services as well as running foot trimming courses throughout the year.
Herd Health Planning is an essential aspect of all farming enterprises but it is often under used and under valued.
Drove Farm Vets believe that the success of herd health planning is through a close vet-farmer relationship, enabling us to work together to improve the health, welfare and productivity of your farm.
At Drove Farm Vets, we are uniquely placed to help promote animal health and welfare and offer advice to our farmers on disease prevention. Our dynamic consultancy visits are not a tick box exercise but are focused on assessing each farm on an individual basis. By collating farm data Drove Farm Vets can review key performance indicators, including fertility, mortality and growth rate data to help make recommendations on improving farm productivity.
Our consultancy visits are carried out on farm where we aim to deliver quality advice tailored to each clietns farm. We endeavour to use our time to improve farm efficiency by reviewing and refining routine procedures as well as helping create a monthly plan for the year ahead. Our findings are detailed in a written report, complete with an antibiotic usage review, and our short and long term recommendations are discussed. These completed health plans are wholly compliant with drug prescribing laws and farm assurance schemes e.g. red tractor assurance standards.
To find our more about Herd Health Plans or to book your Consultancy Visit, please call the Farm Office on 01793 501499.
Since 2012 Drove Farm Vets have been successfully running the Drove DEW Club for our dairy clients.
With some 30 members we produce monthly reports through Interherd Plus listing 30 Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) giving an overview of health and performance.
The KPIs look at fertility, mastitis, lameness and energy figures giving the clients' regular vet an up to date view of what is happening on farm and the opportunity to pick up problems early and act upon them.
The group is bench marked against each other and nationally, which gives excellent discussion material for our regular meetings and farm walks, which are informative and sociable.
If you would like to find out about more about Drove DEW Club then please call the Farm Office on 01793 501499
Achieving the best possible performance and productivity from your herd requires a combination of excellent animal husbandry, good management and high genetic merit animals.
Good herd management allows for high genetic merit animals to reach their full potential without restriction; whilst careful genetic selection will ensure that genetic progress is maintained and enhanced in each subsequent generation of heifer replacements.
Drove Farm Vets operates an active bovine advanced breeding service, headed by Peter May, which offers both Embryo Transfer and Ovum Pick Up (OPU)/ In-Vitro Fertilisation services to pedigree cattle breeders who wish to amplify and accelerate their herds genetic potential.
Embryo Transfer involves enrolling high genetic merit ‘donor’ animals onto a bespoke superovulation programme, following which fertilised embryos are collected at 7 days post-insemination. Providing the embryos are of suitable quality they can either be implanted ‘fresh’ into synchronised recipient animals or frozen and stored in liquid nitrogen for future use.
OPU/IVF is a relatively new technique, which involves the harvesting of oocytes directly from the ovaries of the donor animal. These oocytes are then matured in a laboratory environment, in-vitro fertilised and those of suitable quality can then be frozen at an equivalent stage to that of a normal ET embryo. The OPU process can be initiated in a suitably high genetic merit donor from puberty and can be repeated more frequently than a traditional superovulation protocol. The advantages of this are a shorter generation interval, increased embryo numbers and no delay in breeding the donor animal.
Drove Farm Vets also offer a successful Repeat Breeder Embryo service. This involves implanting a frozen embryo into a problem breeder cow/heifer at 7 days post-insemination in order to try and enhance the natural mechanism for maternal recognition of pregnancy in the recipient animal so that the animal is more likely to calve down and remain in the herd.
To find out more about Drove Farm Vets advanced breeding and ET services, please call the Farm Office on 01793 501499.
Drove Farm Vets offer a Calf Tracker Programme for analysis of dairy calf performance.
Calf Tracker is an XLVet’s calf health and weight monitoring system which allows us to monitor youngstock performance and benchmark farms.
Calf growth to weaning is a reflection of the calf management system on farm. Regular weighing of calves produces average daily live weight gain data on a month by month basis which is displayed in a report providing a visual assessment of growth rates. Farm reports also display individual calf weights which can help highlight calves that are not hitting growth targets.
Regular weighing of post weaned animals can help make more informed management decisions, and the opportunity to initiate investigations into aspects of health and management where required.
Drove Farm Vets are able to visit your farm to help weigh calves and youngstock. Alternatively, you could choose to weigh them yourselves and send us data for analysis and follow up reports.
If you would like to find out more about Calf Tracker then please call the Farm Office on 01793 501499
The widespread use of genomic testing in the dairy industry has led to a rapid acceleration in genetic progress within the dairy cattle population in recent years.
Cattle breeding companies have used genomic evaluation of their bull studs to provide a much higher reliability proof for young sires, such that many of the sires currently in use are being used solely on the basis of their genomic genetic predictions.
The genomic evaluation process involves taking a small sample of DNA (hair pluck / ear notch) from an animal, which is evaluated in the laboratory against a series of known production and trait markers on the bovine genome to give a genomic prediction of the likely future performance of the animal. This will typically have a reliability of typically 60-65% (compared to parent average reliability of approx. 25%).
This technology is now commercially available for genomic evaluation of dairy female animals, which means that the selection pressure that has led to the dramatic acceleration in the rate of genetic progress for breeding bulls, can now be successfully applied to the breeding female population.
Drove Farm Vets offer a comprehensive veterinary genetics package consisting of a herd genetic audit, heifer replacement inventory, Clarifide™ genomic testing and the creation of a bespoke selection index for your herd based upon the breeding objectives that are important to you. This will allow for improved replacement heifer selection and breeding management decisions to be made in your herd in order to optimise your rate of genetic progress. This may include enhanced accuracy of selection of heifers to sell, targeted use of sexed semen, identification of top genetic merit heifers which may be suitable for ET/OPU and also identifying heifers to be bred to beef sires.
If you would like to find out more about Clarifide then please call the Farm Office on 01793 501499