Feed a diet that stimulates rumen fermentation and improves hindgut health of dairy cows
During the transition to lactation, dairy cows are switched to a high energy diet and the amount of fast fermentable carbohydrates in the ration goes up. It is a well-known fact that this puts pressure on rumen fermentation, sometimes leading to subclinical rumen acidosis (SARA).
More recent evidence suggests that there is an equally strong impact on the hindgut3,4,5. Signs that are typically attributed to SARA, like for example loose and frothy faeces, are actually signs of hindgut acidosis (see Figure 1)6,39.
*Figure 1: pH and production of LPS in rumen, caecum and faeces of cows fed high amounts of grain compared to control cows. Increasing the level of starch in the dairy diet decreased pH and increased LPS both in the rumen and the hindgut (Adapted from Li et al, 2012).*