Cow comfort is paramount in a productive and profitable dairy. Observation and experience show that cows housed in a comfortable environment produce more milk and generally live healthier longer lives, meaning that focusing on cow comfort is beneficial to both economics and animal welfare.
Some of the key aspects of cow comfort are: Ventilation, Cow Cooling, Stalls, Flooring, and Lighting.
Ventilation is an important aspect of an animal’s well-being. The goal of ventilation is to provide fresh air uniformly throughout the dairy shelter, so all animals receive adequate quantities and qualities. Proper ventilation means moving outside air through designated air inlets and evenly distributing it throughout the shelter. Incoming air mixes with air contaminants (moisture, dust, pathogens, manure gases, and heat) in the shelter and is discharged, as shown in the image below. Fans hanging over stalls or alleys do not provide air exchange and are not a substitute for open sidewalls and endwalls, rather these fans help with Cow Cooling.
- Natural or Tunnel Ventilation of Freestall Structures: What is Right for Your Dairy Facility? - Curt A. Gooch (2001)
- Environmental Control for Today’s Milking Center - Curt A. Gooch (2001)
- Ventilation Strategies for Environmental Control of Modern Milking Centers - Curt A. Gooch and William G. Bickert (1999)
- Effective Natural Ventilation for New Smaller Freestall Barns - Curt A. Gooch (2004)
- Effective Natural Ventilation Strategies - Curt A. Gooch (2003)
- Ventilation of Pre-Weaned Calf Barns - Jennifer S. Bockhahn and Curt A. Gooch (2018)
- Guidance on Evaluating Calf Barns Relative to Ventilation Needs - Jennifer S. Bockhahn and Curt A. Gooch (2018)
- Tube Fan Ventilation for Pre-Weaned Calf Barns - Jennifer S. Bockhahn and Curt A. Gooch (2018)
- Tunnel Ventilation for Tie Stall Dairy Barns - Penn State Extension: John Tyson, Dan McFarland, and Robert Graves (2014)
- In-Field Quantification of Fan Performance in Tunnel-Ventilated Freestall Barns - Katherine Lankering, Curt Gooch, and Scott Inglis (2004)
- Tunnel Ventilation for Freestall Barns - Curt A. Gooch (2000)
- Economics of Tunnel Ventilation for Freestall Barns - Curt A. Gooch, Micheal B. Timmons and Jason Karszes (2000)
- Application of Time Integrated Value (TIV) Environmental Control Technology to Dairy Barns - Curt A. Gooch and Michael B. Timmons (2002)
- Time-Integrated Value Environmental Control Technology: Step Up to the Times. This Modern Ventilation and Cow-Cooling System Controller Helps Improve Cow Environment - Curt A. Gooch and Michael B. Timmons (2001)