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“With CowManager, I know that my cows are always being monitored and I have more peace of mind while at home with my family,” says Jeremy Natzke.

Jeremy Natzke works with three partners as the manager of Wayside Dairy in Greenleaf, Wisconsin. Founded in 1863, Wayside is a fifth-generation family dairy milking 2,050 cows with 250 dry cows and 1,600 heifers in free-stall group housing.

After considerable research of activity monitoring systems, Wayside installed CowManager in July 2020. They have 2,450 sensors throughout the herd and use Fertility, Health, Nutrition and Find my Cow modules. CowManager is heavily relied upon for everyday management of the herd and has provided strategic guidance to improve reproductive performance and lessen health challenges.

Climbing reproductive success

Previously, Wayside had a 33% pregnancy rate. Since installing CowManager, they’ve achieved a 38% pregnancy rate for the year and according to Natzke, the numbers are still climbing.

Because of the Fertility alerts, herd reports show that Wayside is breeding less cows on the synchronization program and catching more cows on natural heats. Decreased reliance on synchronization is saving on costs and labor while achieving better reproductive performance.

Herd RecordPrior to CowManagerCurrent
21-PR (%)3338
HDR (%)6678
CR (%)5051


Early detection and intervention

Natzke and Wayside Dairy measure success by healthy, productive cows and they are boosting this benchmark because of CowManager’s Health module. Costly health events like metritis and displaced abomasums have dropped significantly since July 2020. With the industry average cost of $329 per metritis case, the 11% reduction in metritis health events alone has saved Wayside Dairy an estimated $83,237 annually.

“The Health module has helped us become more profitable just by finding sick cows quicker,” says Natzke. With early detection, Wayside is able to treat cows earlier and get them back on their feet and back to the milking string faster.

Health EventChange
Sold4% Decrease
Died2% Decrease
Metritis11% Decrease
Pneumonia32% Decrease
Diarrhea13% Increase
Displaced Abomasum1% Decrease
Ketosis1% Increase
Retained Placenta1% Decrease

Both the Health and Nutrition module have been integral in improving cow health at Wayside. For maternity care, the Nutrition module has improved labor and recovery. CowManager identifies cows that may have calving issues and Wayside intervenes with a calcium bolus or other treatment to keep them eating and ruminating prior to calving.

Natzke says, “The return on investment with CowManager is really very quick. What it does is allow us to spend more time with the animals that need more attention.” 

If you’re searching for greater peace of mind in regard to herd management, talk with your local Select Sires representative about CowManager today.

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