The SmartBolus System To Monitor The Health Of Dairy Cows 

 Dairy Cows

The SmartBolusTM system enables several health monitoring capabilities for dairy herds.  Because the data is collected internally, you don’t have to worry about sensors getting bumped and knocked off the animal.

Monitoring the health of fresh cows for ten days after calving has been shown to provide very positive returns in terms of herd health and milk yield.  With the SmartBolusTM system, monitoring your cows becomes as simple as looking at a computer report each morning. Not only can you monitor your fresh cows with ease, now you can monitor your cows in the close-up pen or throughout the lactation, letting the computer alert you only when an exception reading occurs.

Internal motion sensors allow the SmartBolusTM system to provide heat detection reporting. A straight forward report will alert you to those cows whose movement scores indicate they are in heat allowing you to catch those missed heats and improve your pregnancy rates.

The SmartBolusTM system can provide a calving alert.  The data transmitted from the cow indicates when she is likely to calve.  This information can be very helpful, allowing the dairy to monitor a cow more closely and potentially avoid a lost calf in the case of a difficult birth.

The TenXsys Wireless Air Temperature Sensor gathers air temperature information from a pen or barn, and transmits this data to a computer running the TenXsys Bovine Health System.

Taking the temperatures of fresh cows for ten days after calving is an effective way to catch uterine infections early but manually taking temperatures requires extra time and labor.

There are several advantages to using the SmartBolusTM system to monitor temperatures of your cows:

1) There is no manual effort involved.

2) Reporting can be set so that you are only alerted for cows whose temperature has changed by a certain amount (configurable).  For example you could set the report so that it only shows you cows whose temperatures have changed by 1.5 degrees F in the last day.

3) While the ten days after freshening are the most important days to monitor for illness, with the SmartBolusTM system it becomes effortless to monitor the cows before and after the ten day ‘fresh window’.  The extra monitoring has proven to be very effective in catching additional cases of illness that did not fall in the traditional ten day window – for example, with the close-up cows.

Taking the temperatures of fresh cows for ten days after calving is an effective way to catch uterine infections.  OK, so you’re taking temperatures for the most critical 10 days of a cow’s year but what about the other ~350 days? 

With the SmartBolusTM system watching cow temperatures day and night, every day of the year, you are much more likely to catch illness early and avoid the expense associated with an advanced illness that wasn’t caught early on.

In addition to temperature monitoring the SmartBolusTM system has motion sensing.  Motion sensing enables you to be alerted for any unusual changes in movement of a cow in your herd.

The larger the herd you manage the more SmartBolusTM can help you stay on top of herd health.

Research has shown that if a fresh cow gets a uterine infection and the infection is not discovered and treated right away then the cow will likely have a reduced milk yield throughout that lactation.  The loss of milk can amount to a significant price to pay for not finding and addressing a fresh cow health issue.

SmartBolusTM is a product of TenXsys. TenXsys has been in business since 2002 and has developed a number of animal monitoring products.  Initial products were wildlife tracking devices which required reliable, power conserving electronics that needed to be able to withstand harsh environments for several years. 

Their engineering team has combined experience of over 80 years.

In 2005 TenXsys was asked to begin investigating the feasibility of applying some of their existing technology to a rumen bolus application.  Since mid-2007 they have had ongoing successful trials at dairies.

Via SmartBolus