Do Dairy Producers Use Effective Management Practices to Improve the Value of Market Cows?

P. R. Tozer, G. A. Varga, W. R. Henning, L. A. Holden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


A survey of dairy producers in Pennsylvania was undertaken to ascertain the management of market cows and identify practices currently used to improve the quality of beef from these animals. Ninety dairy producers in Pennsylvania were selected based on recommendations from financial advisers and consultants who suggested that these producers would have the necessary records required to complete the survey. Of these 90 producers surveyed, 69 provided usable responses to the survey (77% response). Average herd size of respondents was 280 ± 226 cows. During on-farm interviews, producers were asked questions regarding how market cows were sold, condition of cows sold, drug residue notifications, vaccination and injection administration, foot trimming frequency, and perceived mobility of market cows. The results of the survey indicated that most producers market cattle through auction markets. The survey also showed that most producers did not use marketing strategies to take advantage of seasonal cow beef price variability. The average number of injections given annually to dairy cows was 19.4 ± 12.4. The percentage of injections given in the neck varied, but very few producers administered all injections in the neck; a majority of injections (65%) were given in other sites. The tail-head or the hip/ rump/flank areas were identified as the most common sites. Producers also reported a 5% annual rate of “downer” cows, the principal cause being metabolic disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)272-277
Number of pages6
JournalProfessional Animal Scientist
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology


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