Effect of prefeeding with pangolagrass hay on the incidence of laminitis in early lactating cows

By Lu, S. A. and Lu, ShuiAnn and Wang, J. Y. and Wang, JiaYu and Yang, C. L. and Yang, ChungLiang and Yang, T. W. and Yang, TeWei, Journal of the Chinese Society of Animal Science, 1995
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Multiparous Holstein cows were separated into 2 groups of 10 each according to their calving date. The test group was fed twice daily, each meal provided in the following feed order: pangola grass (Digitaria decumbens) hay 2 kg, concentrate and freshly cut pangola grass 2 kg. For the control group, the feed order was: freshly cut pangola grass 5 to 10 kg, concentrate and freshly cut pangola grass. Concentrate was given according to milk yield and pangola grass was given to appetite after the concentrate. Feeding started 8 days after calving and lasted for 3 months. Incidence of laminitis was significantly lower in the test than in the control cows, 25.8 versus 38.0%, and the difference was greatest within 4 weeks after calving. Fibre intake and rumen beta-hydroxybutyrate concentration during the first 8 weeks after calving were higher in the test cows. There were no significant differences between groups in hoof characteristics, rumen pH and rumen volatile fatty acid, and serum lactate, concentrations
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