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This study aimed to determine the effect of diet formulated to provide prepartum (DCAD= -749.16 mEq/head/day) and postpartum (DCAD = 1473.56 mEq/head/day) by feeding 90 g of an anionic and 120 g cationic salt respectively, on blood mineral concentration, health, postpartum milk production and composition in buffaloes. Twenty multiparous buffaloes were enrolled 21 days before expected calving date and divided into two groups. The treatment group with 10 cows received anionic rations for - 21 day to parturition and cationic ration from parturition to +21 days, while the control group was fed a usual ration. Postpartum incidences of milk fever, dystocia, retention of placenta, mastitis as well as weekly data of milk production, and milk composition were recorded. Plasma samples obtained at days -21, -10, -1, +1, +10 and +21 relative to calving were analyzed for calcium and magnesium. Magnesium concentration was increased with reduced prepartum Dietary Cation-Anion Difference (DCAD) in the diet value being 2.77±0.13 mg/dl and 3.15±0.12 mg/dl for the control and treatment group respectively, one day before calving. Calcium concentration was significantly higher (P<0.05) just one day before calving and it further higher (P<0.001) at 1, 10 and 21 days after calving in the treatment group as compared to the control group. Considerable reduction in per cent incidence of parturient paresis (10.0 vs. 20.0), and prolapse (0.0 vs. 10.0) was observed treatment group as compared to the control group. The DCAD concentration had no effect on milk yield, protein, lactose and fat corrected milk, but postpartum milk fat was significantly increased by the treatment. It may be concluded that by altering DCAD of the diet can increase postpartum milk fat with benefits in calcium status and reduced disease incidence without negatively affecting performance in periparturient buffaloes.
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