Efficacy of controlled-release capsules containing monensin for the prevention of subclinical ketosis in pasture-fed dairy cows.N Z Vet J. 2015 Sep; 63(5):249-53.NZ
To determine the effectiveness of intra-rumenal controlled release capsules (CRC) containing 32 g of monensin administered pre-calving to reduce the cumulative incidence of subclinical ketosis (SCK) in mainly pasture-fed dairy cows.
Cows (n=837) due to calve in the first 6 weeks of the spring calving period were enrolled from four commercial herds in the Waikato region of New Zealand in a blinded, randomised, negative-controlled field trial. Three weeks before the start of the calving period cows were randomly allocated to receive either no treatment (control) or a single CRC containing monensin and then blood sampled on two occasions, 7 days apart within 12 days following calving for measurement of concentrations of beta hydroxybutyrate (BHBA) in blood. Cows were diagnosed with SCK if the concentration of BHBA in blood in either of these samples was ≥1.2 mmol/L.
Fewer treated cows were diagnosed with SCK within 12 days post-calving than control cows (144/340 (42.4%) vs. 192/336 (57.1%); p<0.001). There was no interaction between treatment group and age, breed or herd of origin. From the final multivariable model it was estimated that treatment with CRC containing monensin reduced the absolute cumulative incidence of SCK by 17.9 (95% CI=9.2-25.8)% compared to no treatment.
Treatment with a CRC containing monensin>10 days prior to calving reduced the cumulative incidence of SCK of pasture-based dairy cows in commercial dairy herds within 12 days post-calving.
Administration pre-calving of an intra-rumenal bolus containing monensin can be considered as one of a range of management options for the control of SCK in early lactation.