Mastitis is an inflammation of the mammary gland caused by bacteria

that enter the udder through the teat end.  Mastitis is nearly always caused by bacteria that invade the udder through the teat end and multiply there.    

Mastitis can be either clinical or sub-clinical.  Clinical mastitis is mastitis in which an abnormality of the udder or secretion is observed.

Clinical mastitis can be mild, moderate or severe.  Cows with mild clinical mastitis typically have abnormalities in the milk such as clots and flakes with little or no swelling of the gland or systemic illness.   Cows with severe clinical mastitis typically have a sudden onset of udder inflammation, abnormal milk, and systemic signs such as fever, increased heart rate, dehydration, weakness and depression.

Subclinical mastitis is a form of mastitis in which the udder is normal and the milk appears normal.   However, microorganisms can usually be cultured from the milk and inflammatory changes in the milk can be detected by measuring the somatic cell count.

Farmers can see clinical mastitis

Clinical Mastitis is the tip of the iceberg!

If the farmer could see both clinical and sub -clinical,:




Copyright 1999-2001
New Bolton Center Field Service Department
Students:  Keith Javic - Class of 2003, C. Nikki Conroy - Class of 2003