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J Dairy Sci. 2002 Oct;85(10):2512-20.

The effect of an intramammary teat seal on new intramammary infections.

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Institute for Animal Health, Compton, Berkshire, United Kingdom.


As concern over the possible overuse of antibacterials increases, attention has focused on reduction of antibiotic usage and on nonantibiotic alternatives. A nonantibiotic intramammary teat sealant, Teat Seal (Cross Vetpharm Group Ltd., Tallaght, Dublin, Ireland), has been available in Ireland, in combination with an intramammary tube of cloxacillin. Teat Seal has been reformulated for use in cows with low cell counts as an alternative to antibiotic dry cow therapy at the end of lactation. The product is now marketed as Orbeseal (Pfizer Animal Health). A comparison between this teat sealant and no treatment was made on new intramammary infections and clinical mastitis, on all cows within four herds, and on low cell count cows in three herds. No cases of clinical mastitis in the dry period were observed in cows treated with Teat Seal (n = 197), whereas a significant number (6 cows) were observed in the untreated cows (n = 204). In all herds, significantly more new infections at calving were found in the untreated group (62 cows in the untreated group compared with 21 cows in the Teat Seal group). In those quarters where infections were first detected at calving, the incidence of clinical mastitis was significantly greater in the untreated group. Quarters in both treatment groups that were infected at drying off with Corynebacterium spp. or coagulase-negative staphylococci were not protected against new infections and had an increased risk of new infection by Streptococcus uberis. The results will inform those restricting their use of antibiotic dry cow therapy in alternative management strategies and the additional risk of new intramammary infection.

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