Bovis ISSN 2398-2993

Milk allergy

Contributor(s): Ash Phipps , Neil Paton

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Introduction

  • Cause: autoallergic reaction (anaphylaxis) to the cow’s own milk extract (casein).
  • Signs: generalized or local (on the eyelids and muzzle) urticaria with or without piloerection. Other signs include dullness, recumbency, shuffling gait, ataxia, muscle tremors, coughing, respiratory distress, restlessness, tail swishing, abdominal watching, abdominal licking, abdominal kicking, vocalization and maniacal behavior.
  • Diagnosis: based on history of being recently dried off or milk retention and clinical signs.
  • Treatment: administration of antihistamines (if licensed in geographical location) and anti-inflammatories.
  • Prognosis: good for recovery, but likely to reoccur in the future.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Drying off the cow or delayed milking (generally greater than the normal 12 hour interval between milking) results in cow having an autoallergic reaction to her own milk extract (casein).

Pathophysiology

  • The exact physiological mechanism that initiates the autoallergic reaction is unknown.

Timecourse

  • Occurs within hours of dry off or retention of milk.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

Other sources of information

  • Radostits O M, Gay C C, Hinchcliff K W & Constable P D (eds) (2006) Veterinary Medicine: A textbook of the diseases of cattle, horses, sheep, pigs and goats. Elsevier Health Sciences. pp 1935-1936.
  • Rebhun W C, Guard C & Richards C M (1995) Diseases of dairy cattle. Williams and Wilkins. pp 390.


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