Given the difficult year and tight cash flows, treatment cost at drying-off has been closely scrutinised and some farms have needed to compromise in favour of cost.
We should consider the impact of a compromise in terms of the two broad goals for dry-off treatment -
* Treatment of existing infections
* Prevention of new infections
The options at dry-off will have included antibiotic dry cow therapy, teat sealant (or a combination of both), blanket therapy, selective therapy, and different choices for different cows.
The options chosen at drying-off will probably be the single biggest influence on the risk of mastitis at calving and in early lactation!