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Care & Management of Cow (animal) before during and After Parturation (Calving)

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Even though the Parturation is normal physiological process, it requires to take due care at all stages of Parturation by manager of the herd.

Before Parturation:

  1. Turning cow into a loose box: To isolate from other animals, animal of advance pregnancy must be separated into calving box which must be cleaned & properly disinfected, bedded with clean, soft & absorbent litter

  2. Guarding Against Milk Fever: In advanced pregnancy stage high yielding & first calvers are susceptible to Milk fever. To avoid it, provide enough minerals especially calcium by bone meal in daily diet. Give large doses of Vit. D about a week period to calving.

  3. Avoid Milking: Prior to parturation which is likely to delay parturation by few hours.

  4. Watch for parturation signs: Signs to know primary stage of parturation which are udder becomes large, dislended, herd, depressed or hollow appearance on either side of tail head, vulva enlarged in size, thick mucus discharge from valva, and uneasiness of the animal.

During Parturation:

  1. Dilation Phase: Consists of the acts Le down & get ups, uneasiness due to labour pain, observe these acts from safe distance without making disturbances to animal.

  2. Parturation period: In normal case period is of 2-3 hrs while in first calving 4-5 hrs or more Observe from safe distance without disturbing the animal.

  3. Watch for presentation of Calf: The phase of expulsion of foetus, observe the appearance of water bag & its gradual emergence, bursting of it and appearance of fore feet with hoof & mouth.

  4. Normal presentation: Any deviation from normal presentation of calf occurs; the immediate help of veterinarian should be taken being care of Dystokia.

After Parturation:

  1. Expulsion of placenta / after birth: The placenta is discharged within 5-6 hrs. After calving in normal case while if not discharged within 6-7 hrs. Get the help of veterinarian and treat as per requirement.

  2. Supply Luke-warm drinking water to cow.

  3. When placenta expelled, prevent cow from eating.

  4. The placenta should be properly disposed off by burying in ground.

  5. Clean cow's body with clean & warm water with antiseptic.

  6. Supply moistened bran with crude sugar or molasses.

Care with regard to milking of cow:

  1. After Parturation when first milking, ensure that all blockages from teats removed.

  2. Cow may be milked three times a day until the inflammation disappears from the udder.

  3. Provide enough minerals i.e. calcium & phosphorus through diet & do not milk fully at a "time to avoid milk fever in high yielding cows

Care with regards to feeding:

  1. Types of feeds provided - milk laxative, palatable &c nutritious.

  2. Suitable feeds - Wheat bran, oats, and linseed oil seeds.

  3. DCP & TDN of ration must be 16-18% & 70% respectively.

  4. 40-60 gms. Sterilized bone meal & 40 gm common salt may be adder', to grains.

  5. Succulent green, palatable fodders containing 50-60% legumes are suitable while amount concentrates should be increased gradually in three weeks.

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Care of Milking Animals

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The routine of management practices like feeding and milking and caring should be followed some time each day, being animals are more sensitive habitual for timing.

  1. Feeding & watering: The adequate clean & fresh water should be provided. An adult dry cow drinks 30-32 liters of water per day besides it requires 4 liters of water for every liter of milk production. Also, the water consumption increases when air temperature rises.

Feeding: The following feed should be fed to cow for one week to recoup energy i.e. 1 kg cooked bajra per day + 1 coconut + 100 gin methi seed + 100 gin shepu + 100 gm Aaliv + 100 gm sweet oil

Regular feeding for milk production:
The production ration should. Be given the additional allowance of ration for milk production over and above maintenance requirement. One kg additional amount of concentrates is required for every 2.5 kg of milk.

  1. Housing: Good housing is required for protecting animals from heat, rains and winds. Also, proper drainage, ventilation and exposure to sunlight must be there. These factors must be available in any type of housing chosen.

  2. Cleaning & grooming: Cows should be kept clean both for clean milk production and health of animals, it requires daily brushing which removes, dirt and loose hair. The regular grooming helps to keep skin clean, helps for blood circulation.

  3. Disease control: The prevention of disease & parasite infestation of the herd is most important. To achieve this, keep the sanitation by keeping the housing & other places clean and regularly disinfected. Many diseases are also prevented by timely vaccination.

  4. Exercise: The cows should be provided free movement to give the needed exercise.

  5. Milking: The udder and teals should be washed with warm water mixed with KMnO4 solution and wiped to dry before milking solution and wiped to dry before milking. The milking should be conducted cleanly, gently, quietly, quickly and completely by suitable method of milking. It should be completed within optimum time period of seven minutes.

  6. Breeding: Cow should be bred at 60 days after date of parturition which helps good reproductive health of cow.

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Care of Pregnant Animals

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The early singe or latter 1/3 period of the gestation   period   is important period in view of care and management.

  • Feeding: It is necessary to provide adequate feeding to meet nutritional requirements of both mother and foetus. The challenge feeding (extra feeding) should be given from 5th month of pregnancy @ 1.25 - 1.75 kg of concentrate mixture and give 3.4 - 4.5 kg from 8th month onwards, over and above maintenance ration to Zebu and crossbred animals. Provide adequate clean water.

  • Drying of Cow: The pregnant cow-should be dried above 60 days before expected dale of calving. To conserve the nutrients which are required for developing foetus & increased milk yield.

  • Housing: Pregnant animal approaching parturition should be isolated and kept in calving pen which should be clean, well ventilated, bedded and   disinfected. This helps   to   take   special   Care   regarding   feeding management, to avoid crowding, mounting by other animals, to avoid infection from oilier animals.

  • Care at expected Date: To know expected date of calving is a must to take care at time of parturition. Careful watch should be kept close to expected date of parturition. Do not interfere the normal act of calving. If there is dystokia provide time, veterinarian help.

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Services / Activities

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Services offered

The Dairy Development Department offers the following services to the farming community and to the general public.

  • Dairy extension and Advisory services in modern scientific cattle management, feeding, fodder cultivation, fodder preservation, utilization of farm waste, value addition by conversion of milk into milk products etc.
  • Preparation of schemes to be implemented by the department, LSGDs and other bankable schemes.
  • Assist farmers in establishing dairy units.
  • Provide information regarding mechanization of farm activities.
  • Provide planting materials for the propagation of fodder crops.
  • Provides training in various aspects of dairying.
  • Conducting exhibitions, contact classes, demonstrations etc.
  • Provide facilities for testing quality of milk to ensure safety of public health.
  • Test the quality of milk samples brought by public and provide the results.
  • Provide any information related to dairying as requested by the general public.
  • Assist farmers in organizing Dairy cooperatives for marketing surplus milk.
  • Conduct enquiries based on complaints received from public.



Service offered


Contact person

How to avail


Fodder production

Assisting dairy farmers for taking up fodder cultivation

Dairy farmer

Local Dairy Farm Instructor/ Dairy Extension Officer/
District Officer/nearby Dairy co-op.society

Frequent contact with the DESU/AIR farm news/News papers


Dairy farmers contact programme

Conveying modern technology of dairy farming to the dairy farmers

Dairy farmer

Local Dairy Farm Instructor/ Dairy Extension Officer

Frequent contact with the District office & DESU


District Level Cattle show

Providing a forum for the dairy farmers to present their professional problems & seek redressal. Experience sharing etc

Dairy farmer/Dairy Co-op Society

Deputy Director/ Dairy Extension Officer/Dairy Farm Instructor of the district

Frequent contact with the District office & DESU


Milk Shed Development programme

Encouraging farmers having the necessary infrastructure & aptitude to set up  dairy farm unit consisting of 2 cow, 5 cow,  10 cow,20 cow units ,Heifer Rearing units, Need based assistance to dairy farmers, assistance for milking machine, etc.

Dairy farmer

Deputy Director/ Dairy Extension Officer/Dairy Farm Instructor of the district/Nearby DCS

Frequent contact with the District office & DESU/AIR farm news/News Paper


Modernization of Dairy co-operatives

Assistance for newly registered societies, assistance for revival of defunct societies, providing assistance for improving the infrastructure for milk procurement and testing in the DCS etc.

Dairy Co-op Society

Deputy Director/ Dairy Extension Officer/Dairy Farm Instructor of the district

Frequent contact with the District office & DESU


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Schemes and Programmes

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The Department has statutory functions under the Kerala Cooperative Societies Act 1969 and the Milk Products Order 1992 issued by the Government of India under the Essential Commodities Act besides developmental programmes. As on 31-06-2010, there are 3503( 2552 Apcos and 616 Traditional ) Primary Dairy Cooperatives, 3 RegionalUnions and I Apex Federation (Commonly known as Milma) under the Administrative supervision of this department. 23 Dairies registered under the MMPO is being monitored by the department. The department is the nodal agency for Fodder Development and Rural Dairy Extension. Financial assistance is extended to dairy cooperatives in addition to technical advice. The dairy farmers, housewives, dairy cooperators and dairy cooperative employees are imparted training in different aspects at the Dairy Training Centres of the Department.

The state dairy laboratory at Trivandrum,  has modern facilities for conducting the chemical and microbial quality tests of milk and milk products. There is another laboratory at Alathur, Palakkad which is approved by the Gov. of India for testing milk and milk products under the provisions of MMPO

The Kerala Dairy Farmers Welfare Fund Board collects contributions from the primary Dairy Cooperatives and gives pension to the dairy farmers, above 60 years of age and implements other welfare schemes.

The main objectives of the Department are:

  1. To enhance milk production
  2. To enhance rural consumption of milk
  3. To provide facilities for profitable dairying
  4. Administration of Dairy cooperatives under the powers of Kerala Cooperative Societies Act.
  5. To register and control milk processing plants under Milk and Milk Products Regulation under the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India.
  6. To check and ensure quality of milk produced and marketed in the state.

Fodder Production

Dairy development department is the Nodal Agency engaged in the fodder development activities in the state. In order to reduce the cost of production of milk and dairying profitable, the area under fodder cultivation has to be increased. To achieve this objective t various schemes are implementing through the department.

a.     Small holding fodder cultivation:

It is expected to cultivate fodder in farmers field depends on the availability of land with hybrid varieties of Stem cuttings.  Assistance shall be given for the cultivation expenses. For the farmers cultivating fodder below 30 cents ,the cuttings are to be made available to the farmers by the department on free of cost. An amount of Rs.10000/- per hectare will be given as assistance . ( Cultivation assistance Rs.7750/ - & cost of slips Rs.2250/-)

Registration fee – Rs.6/- per cent

b.     Promotion of Azolla cultivation :

Azolla was found to be a cheaper source for nutritious organic feed for dairy cattle and can grown under hygienic environment in homesteads. The cost of one unit is Rs.900/-. Beneficiaries shall be selected through Dairy co-operatives. Application shall be invited from progressive farmers and selected beneficiaries shall be registered under te scheme by charging a nominal registration fee of Rs.50/- per each beneficiary. Beneficiary shall be given Azolla multiplication units consisting of quality seeding materials, silpaulin sheet, Azofert, Azophose and harvesting net . these items shall cost Rs.375/- per unit, and cultivation assistance of Rs.125/- which shall be given as assistance to the farmer.

c.     Fodder cultivation Unit through DCS :

Fodder cultivation  units are established for cultivating new varieties of fodder in every districts in one Ha land. The unit can supply the fodder & cuttings on demand to other farmers at nominal rate. The Assistance per unit is Rs.15000/-.

d.     Fodder Tree cultivation :

Fodder trees like Agathi, Subabul etc. are raised in nurseries in every district and supplied  to farmers for propagation.  The tree leaves will improve the nutritive value of fodder and conserve soil. Nurseries can be raised by Dairy Societies, Kudumbasrees, NGOs etc . They will get an assistance of Rs.2.50/- per tree.

e.     Cultivation of Short duration Fodder crops:

Maize, sorghum and Cowpea are the short duration fodder crops to be cultivated as intercrop or in between two cultivation of paddy. The seeds are supplied free of cost .

f.       Irrigation Assistance :

This Scheme envisages to provide irrigation assistance for existing model fodder plots (minimum area - 50 cents) having water source.  Pump sets, storage tanks, connecting hose etc. can be purchased under this scheme. 50% subsidy limited to Rs. 10000/- is given to each unit.

g.     Fodder Marketing Centres:

This scheme envisages promoting fodder cultivation extensively by the introduction of fodder marketing   units. The present shortage  in the availability of fodder can be met only by providing sustained market for the same. Even though there is widespread demand for fodder, one of the major constraints is the lack of transportation facility to market the same .In this scheme assistance will be provided to units like individuals, organizations, groups etc to collect cut fodder from where it is available in plenty to those areas where there is a great demand.

Two units will be established in 2 different major milk producing blocks. Each unit is supposed to handle 50 tones of fodder. An amount of Rs 50000 (50% subsidy) as assistance will be provided per unit after verification by DEO/DFI

h. Assistance for Mechanization in Fodder harvesting :

Fodder cultivation has to compete with cash crops for space & time Mechanization will encourage the dairy farmers to take up fodder production on commercial basis. It includes providing machineries like harvester, chaff cutter, etc. This will help in reducing the labour cost and thereby reduce the cost of production of milk. Use of chaff cutters will prevent wastage of fodder and improve its intake and thus help in easy assimilation of the nutrients. The project envisages providing financial assistance for the purchase of machinery based on the requirement of the beneficiary. 50 % of the cost of the machinery or Rs 5000/- whichever is less will be provided as assistance.

i. Massive fodder cultivation:

The project envisages establishing fodder cultivation in 10 nos, of  1 ha land each  by Dairy co-operatives, NGO’s, individuals etc, especially on river basins. The project aims  to replicate the Koyippuram model, which is hailed as a success story in the field of  fodder cultivation programmes.

Priority should be given to the land near the river basins. Unit size of area that has to be brought under fodder cultivation is a minimum of 1 hectare / group. There shall be no upper limit. Beneficiaries under this scheme shall be given, off campus training by any one of the DTC of the Department. Assistance for the scheme is Rs.25000/- per unit.

Milk Shed Development Programme

a.   Milkshed development Programme was implemented in the State to boost up the cattle population . Induction of animals has helped in sustaining the milk production of the State. The project Milk shed Development Programme is aimed at bringing more farmers/entrepreneurs in to the sector and to maintain the productivity of crossbred cow and to create awareness to the farmers in adopting scientific management in cattle farming.  In order to achieve above goal assistance for starting Dairy farm units with 2 animals, 5 animals , 10 & 20 animals , Heifer rearing unit etc are included in the scheme.

The cow/buffaloes should be purchased from neighbouring states of Kerala. The selected beneficiary for Dairy Unit has to remit Rs.100/- as registration fee. The beneficiaries of the 5 animal and 10,20 animal units have to cultivate fodder in 50 cents and one acre respectively. Each beneficiary has to construct cattle sheds as per the directions of the Department. Loan has to be channeled through financial institutions by the beneficiary for Dairy units if needed.  For 20/ 10/5/2 animal units beneficiaries can purchase Buffaloes or cows or both within the unit.



Unit cost

Unit subsidy


2 animal units




5 animal units




10 animal units




20 animal units




Heifer rearing unit




Godhanam (one additional cow)



b. Need based assistance to progressive Dairy farmers

The level of mechanization among farms engaged in dairying is very low. This project envisages improving the penetration of technology into these dairy farms and thus improving productivity and overall profitability.

Those dairy farmers having 5 animals and above are the beneficiaries of this project.

The beneficiaries who want to reap the rewards must purchase dairy farm equipments and present the bill for getting the eligible 50 %  or maximum of Rs 10000/-. The farm equipment or a combination of equipments can be purchased as per his requirement from the provided list of equipments eligible for the aid.

The  equipments which can be purchased are :

Milk cans, Rubber mat, Automatic water bowl, Generator, Irrigation system (sprinkler system), pump and motor, Misters / Sprinklers, Cattle shed renovation, Slurry Pump, Silage bunker, Biogas plant, Wheel barrow, Bulk cooler, Solar water heater, Fan for cattleshed, Air compressor ,Digging of open well or bore well, Organic manure – vermin compost manufacturing unit.,  Weighing machine, Veterinary care equipments, Hand operated packing machine, Cream separator , Dehorning equipments, tattooing equipments ,Urea enrichment pit, Automatic shed cleaning equipment etc.

The farmer will get assistance of 50% of the cost to a maximum limit of Rs 10000/.


It may be noted that many dairy farmers quit the sector mainly due to lack of experienced milkers . Completely automatic milking machines are available in the market which is very useful to the farmers. This scheme envisages providing financial assistance for purchase of milking machines by dairy farmers who own more than five milch animals. Beneficiary can purchase Machines from companies approved by the Department. The subsidy amount will be 50% of the total cost subject to a maximum of Rs 20000/-.


A.Dairy Farmers Contact Programme

This programme aims for the  transfer of  technology from Reserch Stations/Universities to the farmers at the village level. It is being conducted at NGO, dairy co-operatives level and also by interaction with farmers directly. An amount of Rs.500/- is provided for meeting the expenditure of farmers contact programme.

The objectives of this scheme are:-

  1. To provide platform for the dairy farmers to gettoghter and share informations about  modern scientific practices in Dairy Cattle Management.
  2. To get feed back from the farmers so as to get enough relevant materials for policy and programme formulation.
  3. To promote interaction among dairy farmers.


B. Quality Awareness Programme (QAP)


Quality Awareness Programme is conducted with the help of Dairy Co-operatives, NGOs and other farmer groups to create an awareness among the milk producers in maintaining the quality of milk and milk products produced and marketed.  It helps the farmers to get better price and in maintaining good quality of milk pooled at the society so that losses due to spoilage is minimized.  For conducting one programme Rs.2500/- is allocated.


C. Consumer Interface Programme

Consumer Interface Programme is a programme organized once in a year as a special drive during Onam season or other festive occasions when there is a possibility of poor quality milk making inroads into the state’s urban market due to increased demand. The CIP envisages to create awareness among the consumers about the organoleptic, physical and chemical qualities of milk and possible adulterants and precautions to be taken to avoid health hazards. It is organized with the help of Residents Associations and other consumer forums preferably at townships. It is conducted by the QCO of respective district. Amount of Rs. 5000/- is provided for the purpose.


D. District &Block Level Cattle Show And Seminars

The main objectives of the scheme are:-

(1)     To provide a forum for the dairy farmers to present their professional problems and seek redressal for it collectively.

2)  Exchange of information for motivation of better cattle management.

3)     Exchange of information and promoting growth of Dairy Cooperative Sector.

The scheme envisages to organise a programme where representatives of the Dairy Cooperatives in the district and the Dairy Farmers are brought together for purposeful dialogue. Information exchange will be achieved by conducting group discussions,Dairy Quiz, Cattle Shows, Fodder Exhibitions, various competitions, etc. The dairy farmers will be honoured for their expertise as demonstrated by the quality of the animals and fodder crops maintained by them. The Dairy Cooperative Societies which show extraordinary performance will be honoured. A minimum number of 750 farmers will participate in this programme. The prizes will be arranged by mobilising sponsorship by the business community. Every year 14 District shows and 138 Block shows  will be arranged throughout the state. An amount of Rs. 10000/- for each block show and Rs. 50000/- for the district shows will be provided.


The project aims to subsidize the milk production cost by meeting Rs. 1/- for every one kg of cattle feed purchased by the producer from the Dairy co-operatives in the state based on the quantity of milk poured to the society and to enhance milk production, procurement in lean / summer season. All the milk producers in the state covered by Dairy Co-operative Societies are benefited through the scheme for sustainable milk production. The subsidized feed is given to the producers against the procurement of milk from every producer. The incentive is calculated on the basis of procurement. For One litre of milk poured at the Dairy Co-operative Society, the farmer is eligible to get 40 paisa.

  • Reduce the cost of milk production and the investment in dairy production is facilitated
  • Encouragement to new entrepreneurs


A.   Operational Assistance To Newly Registered Societies:

The scheme envisages giving financial support to  newly registered societies.   The total amount eligible to a Dairy Co-operative Societies is Rs 25000/ -.

B.  Assistance for revival of Defunct Societies

Department have taken measures to revive the defunct DCS and make them viable. Initially the society is in need of working capital to pay the milk value, office expenses, establishment charges, equipments, transport etc. The assistance of Rs. 20000/- per DCS  helps to meet the initial expenses.

C.   Assistance for the purchase of Chemicals, Glass wares &  Repair of lab equipments

The project aims to provide assistance to Dairy Co-operative Societies for purchasing chemicals & glassware's for testing, Repairing of lab equipments like Milk O Tester & Centrifuge etc.

The scheme provides assistance at the rate of Rs 5000/- per Dairy Co-operative Societies. Preference will be given to traditional co operative societies.

D.    Scheme For Construction of Milk Collection Room

The objective of the scheme is to assist Dairy Co-operative Societies to construct a milk collection room for the hygienic milk collection.


Dairy Co-operative Societies will be eligible for assistance only if the subsidies/ assistance received from all sources has not exceed 50 % of approved estimate.

The assistance will be Rs 50000/ of the estimated cost. And assistance / subsidy received from all other sources shall not exceed 50 % of the approved estimate.

E. Need Based Assistance to Dairy Co-operative Societies

The scheme envisages, giving assistance Dairy Co-operative Societies according to their need. Assistance of 50% of the total cost or to a maximum of Rs 25000 will be provided. Assistance will be given to the following items only.

Purchase & installation of pump, Construction of Bore well / open well, Purchase of office furniture, Renovation of milk collection & distribution rooms, Computerization, Construction of compound wall, extension of existing building,  Godown, Rewiring / Electrical repairs, Solar water heater, Can scrubbers, Milk cans, Milk product making equipments, Generator, Cream Separator, Bulk Milk Cooler, Deep Freezer and any items based on the project submitted by the DCS and approved by the Director.


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