SHAWANO, Wis. — With the December sire summaries, Genex Cooperative Inc. will publish Subclinical Ketosis, Metritis and Foot Health breeding values for Holstein sires.
The new Subclinical Ketosis (SCK) breeding value is a measure that takes into consideration both clinical (observed) and subclinical ketosis.
When used in conjunction with sire selection criteria, like the Ideal Commercial Cow (ICC$) index, improvement is expected in animal health and profitability.
The SCK breeding value was developed by the University of Wisconsin Dairy Science Department and School of Veterinary Medicine researchers and CRI subsidiary AgSource Cooperative Services.
They established the most accurate predictor of blood BHBA (a measure of ketosis) is a combination of milk sample component analysis from cows five to 20 days in milk and 14 data points about the cow and her environment.
Researchers with the CRI International Center for Biotechnology (ICB) then utilized the phenotypic data collected by AgSource from over 330,000 cows and a database of more than 100,000 genotypes from Genex males and females to develop the SCK breeding values.
A second tool for combatting conditions affecting fresh cows is the Metritis (MTR) breeding value.
MTR was developed by CRI ICB researchers based on analysis of the cooperative’s research database, which contains nearly 4 million cows and more than 26 million recorded health events.
Like SCK and MTR, the new Genex proprietary Foot Health (FH) trait was developed to help producers breed for healthier cattle.
Demonstrating foot health’s impact on dairies, the CRI research database indicates a 14.8 percent lameness prevalence and industry studies indicate financial impacts can range from $130 to over $450 per case.
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