× Digital News Videos Health & Science Opinion Education Columnists Lifestyle Cartoons Moi Cabinets Kibaki Cabinets Arts & Culture Gender Podcasts E-Paper Tributes Lifestyle & Entertainment Nairobian Entertainment Eve Woman TV Stations KTN Home KTN News BTV KTN Farmers TV Radio Stations Radio Maisha Spice FM Vybez Radio Enterprise VAS E-Learning Digger Classified Jobs Games Crosswords Sudoku The Standard Group Corporate Contact Us Rate Card Vacancies DCX O.M Portal Corporate Email RMS

Cows that sleep on rubber mattresses can produce more milk

By Othieno Joseph | December 3rd 2016

There is a group of farmers who take dairy production so seriously, they go to great lengths to get maximum yield from their investment.

This type of farmers know what it means to do dairy business. They understand dairy diseases, and the economics of production through experience.

I have a number of such farmers in my clientele list.

Now, when such farmers approach you seeking advice; you have to prepare well lest they beat you in your own game. This are the Google farmers.

They have subscribed to dairy breaking news platforms, they will not miss the Kabarnet, or Nairobi ASK show or the breeders show. If you aren’t fast enough they will lecture you on matters veterinary.

That is the situation I found myself in sometimes back when a dairy innovation in the name of cow mattress made its maiden appearance on the Kenyan market.

I don’t know how he smelt it, a reason I told you these farmers are in dairy farming heart and soul.

So he asked me, daktari what are the benefits of this cow mattress thing? Luckily, I had received the news ahead of them while in The Netherlands and read some literature on this innovation.

The invention of cow mattress was premised on the importance of comfort as a factor affecting milk production.

Ordinary cow sheds will have cemented floors; in Kenya you will find many farmers using marram/sand.

Concrete floors have some disadvantage; the roughness of the surface and many bony prominences on a cow’s body can easily result bruise wounds.

These wounds, if not treated immediately, will attract flies which will cause disturbance and further contamination of the wound with dangerous bacteria.

The coldness of concrete adds to the discomfort, denying the animal quality rest and  increasing stress levels.

To control this, farmers ingeniously spread sawdust or sand onto concrete floors. This may make it comfortable but again comes with another problem of dumbness, as it interferes with the drainage.

This creates conditions that can easily predispose a dairy animal to mastitis, another headache for dairy animals.

Little research done on rubber mattresses as bedding material has yielded good results in favour of this innovation.

Rubber cow mattresses offer the required comfort, it is relatively warm, doesn’t hold onto moisture, subsequently making the animal relax, rest comfortably and sufficiently and ensure high milk production.

This product is readily available in the Kenyan market.

Share this story
Kenya: Public school maintains excelling streak
Hospital Hill Primary School has for the fourth year emerged as the best public institution in Nairobi County in KCPE examinations.
Diabetes: Insulin now an essential drug
Listing NCDs is a relief to Kenyans like 65-year-old Kahuho Mathai from Nyeri County, who was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure.