Hi! I know that it's been a long time, but I have some interesting news about a certain bacteria that you probably have encountered on your farms. I would like to take this opportunity to pass on some helpful information to you. In this bulletin, I will be discussing Pseudomonas and where it can be found. I will also be letting you know about the problems it can cause and possible treatments.

The bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa is wide spread in the environment. It can be found in any water supply. This includes wells, troughs, ponds, parlor wash hoses, and sprinkler pens. This bacteria has also been isolated from waste feed, soil, manure, and animal skin. So as you can see Pseudomonas is everywhere. The real challenge in the control of this bacteria is not only that it is widespread, but it tends to protect itself from antibiotics and the cow’s immune system by covering itself with a layer of slim.

Pseudomonas aeruginosa can attack weakened cows causing a very serious infection in the mammary glands. These bacteria will attack cows that have already been weakened by injury to the teats or by another infection. Poor nutrition can also leave a cow more susceptible to infections. Pseudomonas aeruginosa will not infect cows already infected with other bacteria so this can become a problem in a well managed herd where Strep and Staph are not a problem. Non-clinical infections are very likely to develop if a herd is exposed to small numbers of the bacteria over a long period of time. The most common means for this to happen is when the water used to wash the teats, in sprinkler pens, and the well water used to mix concentrated teat dips is contaminated with Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Some of the signs of mastitis caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa would include a sudden outbreak in several cows all occurring in a few days, but with no change in weather or herd management. Cows may show signs of toxemia even with treatment. There may also be multiple quarter infection, resistant to antibiotic therapy, and a high recurring infection rate.

If you notice any of these problems with your herd there are several things that can be done. The first would be to have any cows not responding to treatment tested for Pseudomonas. You will want to cull or isolate any infected cows to stop the infection from spreading. The water should be tested for Pseudomonas and chlorine treatment of the well water may be necessary. Also all the rubber hoses should be replaced.

I hope that this information will be helpful in the management of your dairy. If you have any questions please call.