Cow health monitor

Published 15 September 15

Aims and objectives

  • Develop an early detection system for metabolic and infectious disease in dairy cattle (Eg lameness, ketosis and acidosis)
  • Utilise animal mounted and remote sensors to identify "early warning" indicators of the subsequent clinical disease condition
  • Use accelerometers mounted on neck collars to determine behaviours associated with feeding behaviour (eating and rumination) and lameness (mobility)
  • Use breath and in-line milk sensors to measure, in real-time, ketones
  • Investigate the relationship between milk ketones with a range of health conditions
  • Use thermal imaging to detect elevated temperatures associated with local inflammation and fever indicative of infectious disease.

Expected outcomes

The early detection of metabolic diseases such as ketosis, acidosis and lameness and intervention at the pre-clinical stage will provide valuable information upon which the farmer can decide on the most appropriate interventions. This project will integrate a number of new dairy livestock sensing systems in real-time, including animal-mounted and product in-line monitoring, to provide a robust decision support system for metabolic disease detection at pre-clinical stages. The solution will be capable of integration within existing technologies on commerical farms to enhance the value of teh farmer's investment, and the information presented to the livestock-keepers will be in an easily accessible and digestible fashion delivered over multiple channels (eg smartphones, tablets or PCs).

Start date
February 2016

Completion date
Febraury 2018

Lead Contractor
Silent Herdsman Ltd

Other delivery partners
Fullwood
ADC Gas Analytics Ltd
SRUC
AHDB Dairy

Funder
Innovate UK

For further information please contact: jenny.gibbons@ahdb.og.uk or call 024 7647 8689