Foot-bath length has been identified as one of the key success factors to getting on top of digital dermatitis.
Vet Sotirios Karvountzis from XL Vets’ practice, Shepton Vets in Somerset, runs through what makes a good foot-bath set up at Walk Farm, Frome, where the 210-cow herd of Montbeliardes are foot-bathed three days a week and digital dermatitis is almost non-existent.
This footbath is long enough to ensure the target three dunks per hind foot or six seconds per foot submergence time. This will maximise control of digital dermatitis.
See also: Genetic link found to digital dermatitis
This bath exceeds the minimum width requirement of 0.5m, encouraging cow flow and enabling cows to walk two abreast if they wish.
Feet should be submerged in the disinfectant up to the coronary band. Target a minimum depth of 10cm.
See also: Foot trimming link to digital dermatitis
There is a hose near to the foot-bath which makes it easy to fill – the easier it is the more likely the job will get done.
This foot-bath is the ideal width for a scraper tractor which means it is easy to clean. The cleaner the foot-bath, the more effective the disinfectant.