AS the UK dairy industry continues to change, the role of the veterinary surgeon on the modern dairy farm has evolved and is increasingly that of an adviser, encompassing all aspects of health, productivity and welfare. Together with other specialists, such as nutritionists, housing consultants and breeding companies, the practitioner's involvement spans all areas of farm management. Undoubtedly, veterinary intervention in key areas such as farm assurance, fertility, nutrition, and disease monitoring and prevention can have a significant impact on the productivity of a unit. This article reviews these areas, providing examples of where veterinary effort may best be directed. Future articles in In Practice will elaborate on specific elements of veterinary input into the dairy enterprise.
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