Proper Technique For Collecting A Milk Culture Sample
1. Read all instructions first. 2. Take your time & be extra careful. If you contaminate the sample the culture results will be inconclusive & will need to be done over. 3. Wash teats with individual paper towels; pre-dip can be used for this. 4. Dry teats with individual paper towels. 5. Scrub each teat end with an alcohol soaked cotton ball. It is very important to scrub the teats farthest away from you first then scrub the closer teats. 6. When taking the milk samples you should start with the closest teats first & the farthest away last. When taking milk from each teat be sure to discard the first 2 squirts then put the next 2 to 4 squirts into a culture vial. Only a small amount of milk is needed. Securely close the vial. For screening of cows for Mycoplasma or Staph Aureus, milk from all 4 teats can go in the same vial.
HELPFUL HINT: DO NOT hold the vial directly under the udder. Hold the vial horizonally and direct milk flow into the vial to avoid foreign particles falling into the bag.
7. Be sure to record proper cow number or name on the lid of the vial, along with the farm name. Preferably, write with a permanent marker. 8. The best results occur when samples are cooled immediately after being taken. Freeze the milk samples if they are not going to be delivered to the clinic the same day they are taken. The freezing of the samples will not affect the culture results. 9. If there is any doubt that you may have contaminated the sample, throw the sample away & do over with a new vial. The most common sources of contamination are straw, dirt or manure falling from the base of the udder into the vial. Remember to be careful. 10. If you have any questions, please contact our office. Good luck!