Monday, October 25, 2010

It's a Technological World

The farm vet spends much of his time on a computer entering and analyzing herd health information for his dairy clients. This is part of the routine on most dairy farms. The computer program is used to track medical treatments, illnesses, milk production, reproduction data, and family lineages. Each individual cow will have it's own "cow-card" and everything about it gets recorded and kept in that "cow-file". After the farm vet does a herd check, he will then go to the computer where all of the cow files are stored and enter what he has found that day.

This is a picture of a Psion. Some dairies use electronic ear tags that are assigned to each animals unique number or ID. The Psion can read this electronic (RFID) tag next to the cow's visual ID tag and then display that cow's file on the small screen. This enables us to look at all the information for that cow instantly which helps in making speedy and accurate decisions.

There are many benefits to using this computer program on a dairy. It is a management tool and they are able to track the overall health of their herds with graphs and charts. The farm vet will usually run through a mental list of trends he looks for in the herds. He can compare herds against each other, identify areas for improvement and areas that deserve praise!


  1. Thanks for bringing this to readers' attention. I, too, spend part of my day doing this. In addition to providing health care for individual animals, we need to look over records to make health decisions for the entire herd. Pretty important!

  2. Yes, it is! Always good for producers to have a different set of eyes looking at their records and overall herd health!