Subclinical Ketosis and Milk Production in Finnish Dairy Cows


  • P. V. A. Miettinen Department of Anatomy, University of Kuopio, P.O. Box 1627, SF-70211 Kuopio, Finland
  • J. J. Setälä Finnish Co-Operative Dairies'Association, Helsinki, Finland



milk production, subclinical ketosis, ketone bodies, reproductive performance, low energy balance


Many dairy cows are unable to consume sufficient food to meet their production and maintenance requirements in early lactation and mobilize body reserves for milk production. Bovine ketosis results from an input / output imbalance in energy metabolism. The economic consequences of disturbancies due to bovine ketosis are of great importance.

The subsequent reproductive performance (5) and the energy balance (2) are negatively associated with milk yield and so the energy intake is positively related to reproductive performance (2 , 4, 7). In contrast to measured energy balance (energy balance = consument energy - required energy) subclinical ketosis; a stage of low energy balance, reflected as elevated levels of ketone bodies, reduced milk yield (3) as well as negatively affects reproductive performance in dairy cows (6, 7, 8), thus a cow with a low milk production should be less fertile, too.

The aim of this study was to determine the relationship between milk production and subclinical ketosis in Finnish dairy cattle.