Serum haptoglobin concentrations in dairy cattle with lameness due to claw disorders

By Kauffold, Johannes and Sherman, Lisa and Smith, Billy I., The Veterinary Journal, 2010
In cattle, elevated blood serum concentrations of haptoglobin, an acute phase protein, have been demonstrated in association with several diseases, but not with lameness. Serum haptoglobin was measured in 60 Holstein dairy cattle diagnosed with lameness due to four claw disorders, pododermatitis septica (PS; n = 41), pododermatitis circumscripta (PC; n = 8), interdigital necrobacillosis (IN; n = 7), papillomatous digital dermatitis (PDD; n = 4). Haptoglobin was measured on day 1 (0–3 days after lameness was observed but before treatment) and on days 3 and 5. A total of 10 healthy cows served as controls (haptoglobin values <1.0 mg/dL). Each of the claw disorders was associated with elevated haptoglobin on day 1 (PS, PC, IN and PDD: 65.9%, 37.5%, 71.4% and 25.0%, respectively). Trimming and antibiotic treatment led to a reduction in the number of PS and IN cows with increased haptoglobin concentrations, respectively (P < 0.05), but trimming did not lead to any reduction in cows with PC. The study showed that lameness due to claw disorders can be associated with a systemic acute phase response and elevated serum haptoglobin in dairy cattle. Based on the course of haptoglobin, treatments seemed effective for all claw disorders except for PC.
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