It’s well recognised that comfortable, contented cows spend longer each day lying down- and therefore give increased milk yields and improve milk quality.
When choosing bedding for your dairy cattle- there are several key factors to take into consideration.
Different cubicle flooring requires different bedding. Since mats or mattresses are designed to provide a comfortable bed- minimal product is required for absorbing muck and milk- and to maintain a dry cubicle. Products such as a superfine, talc- like sawdust are ideal for mats, since a little goes a long way.
Concrete or earth beds will require a deeper, more cushioned bedding material – to encourage cubicle occupancy. For a deep bed, a blend of sawdust for absorbency and shavings to provide cushioning make an excellent choice.
If preventing bacterial growth – thus managing somatic cell counts- is top of your agenda, starting with a dry bed is essential. Look for a product that contains zero moisture- and change regularly to maintain a clean environment where the udder touches the cubicle.
Minimise hock damage- and avoid nasty abrasions with soft bedding which won’t irritate over many hours. If in doubt, try the knee or elbow test- by testing bedding on the cubicle and kneeling, or rolling a little product in your palm with your elbow. Feels sharp or scratchy? It’s not the one…
Different muck-disposal systems will require a different consistency of bedding for spreading. Needing to keep your waste as solids? Try a coarser product, designed to be used as a deep bedding, like our MixBed.
However, if you’re looking to maintain a slurry consistency for pumping or spreading further – look for a finer product that’ll suspend well – to prevent any blockages in slurry channels or settling in the lagoon.
Find a product which is readily available throughout the housing season. Ask your supplier about their reliability, so you don’t find yourself caught short mid-winter!
If you’re considering a change of bedding or cubicle conditioner this season- and would like some advice – speak with our Sales Team who’ll be happy to share their thoughts on what will provide the best results for your livestock!
Ask on Livechat just now, drop us an email or pick up the phone on 01978 854666.