Dairy farms are constantly face novel and difficult challenges. The same is true for dairy nutrition. To understand how animals are responding to nutrition and management, we want to visit the dairy frequently to thoroughly examine the status of the herd. In doing this, we can promptly respond to changes in cow behavior and evaluate new areas of opportunity.
Cow comfort is a necessary step to achieving high production. As an industry, we have come long way in designing and modifying cow housing and stalls. The goal of cow comfort is to provide an environment where cows are either eating, drinking, or laying down and ruminating. As facilities age, we have to keep a lookout for deterioration of flooring, stalls, waterers, and feed bunks. Ventilation and cooling also play a vital role in maintaining high production. We have years of experience on the GPS team to assist in the design and implementation of ventilation and cooling systems.
Cow Behavior & Response
Although cows cannot speak, they provide plentiful non-verbal cues to show how they are responding to our rations and management. We focus on locomotion, body condition, manure consistency, chewing, and laying. By examining these traits, we can adjust future rations and determine how they are responding to current nutrition. Cows are herd animals and prefer consistent routines. By also watching their reaction and behavior to our presence, we can extrapolate how they are being handled and managed.
Nothing on the farm happens without the hard work of employees, managers, and owners. To properly implement new management tools and ensure proper nutrition, all members of the team must be working towards the same goals. We enjoy working with multiple team members with different roles on the farms. Over time, our goal is to provide the proper coaching to the team members to enhance to performance and energy of the farm.