Prevalence, Risk Factors and Consequent Effect of Dystocia in Holstein Dairy Cows in Iran

  • Received : 2011.08.29
  • Accepted : 2011.11.24
  • Published : 2012.04.01


The objective of this research was to determine the prevalence, risk factors and consequent effect of dystocia on lactation performance in Holstein dairy cows in Iran. The data set consisted of 55,577 calving records on 30,879 Holstein cows in 30 dairy herds for the period March 2000 to April 2009. Factors affecting dystocia were analyzed using multivariable logistic regression models through the maximum likelihood method in the GENMOD procedure. The effect of dystocia on lactation performance and factors affecting calf birth weight were analyzed using mixed linear model in the MIXED procedure. The average incidence of dystocia was 10.8% and the mean (SD) calf birth weight was 42.13 (5.42) kg. Primiparous cows had calves with lower body weight and were more likely to require assistance at parturition (p<0.05). Female calves had lower body weight, and had a lower odds ratio for dystocia than male calves (p<0.05). Twins had lower birth weight, and had a higher odds ratio for dystocia than singletons (p<0.05). Cows which gave birth to a calf with higher weight at birth experienced more calving difficulty (OR (95% CI) = 1.1(1.08-1.11). Total 305-d milk, fat and protein yield was 135 (23), 3.16 (0.80) and 6.52 (1.01) kg less, in cows that experienced dystocia at calving compared with those that did not (p<0.05).


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