General information

Cow abscess


A cow abscess is a limited formation with purulent contents inside, which occurs on the body under the skin, most often as a result of damage to its integrity. An abscess not only hurts the animal, but is also extremely dangerous for health and life. If the abscess bursts inside the body, it is fraught with blood infection.

While the abscess is just being formed, it is difficult to notice, because the state of the cow is normal, the animal does not show anxiety, it eats well. When the bump increases, the focus of inflammation becomes painful and hot. At this stage, the symptoms of abscess in cows are as follows:

  1. Loss of appetite.
  2. Oppression. The cow has weakness and apathy due to intoxication of the body.
  3. Anxiety.
  4. The seal is rounded under the skin - on the neck, udder, back, abdomen, limbs or croup.
  5. To the touch the abscess is hot, tight, painful.

Recommendation. Noticing the symptoms of abscess in a cow, you should not postpone its treatment. It is necessary as soon as possible to invite the vet to open an abscess.


In most cases, abscesses occur due to mechanical damage to the skin. Puncture of the skin with a sharp object during grazing or scratching is the gate for penetration of infection. Pathogenic bacteria are always present on the body of the cows. These include:

  • staphylococcus,
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa,
  • E. coli
  • streptococci
  • some types of mushrooms.

Penetrating into the wound, alien microorganisms are attacked by leukocytes. If the animal’s immunity is strong, the protective cells will destroy the harmful bacteria, an abscess will not occur. In cows with reduced immunity, the struggle between leukocytes and pathogenic microorganisms can last for a long time. As a result of this counteraction, pus is formed - it is nothing but dead bacteria and leukocytes. At the same time, the injury site on the skin is inhibited, preventing the contents from exiting. This is an abscess - a limited capsule with pus inside.

Attention! An abscess can reach a huge size, and the amount of pus inside is sometimes a few liters!

Another reason for the occurrence of an abscess is a purulent process in another part of the body of the animal. For example, if a cow has hoofed rot or endometriosis, the pathogenic microorganisms are carried through the body through the bloodstream. As a result, an abscess may appear in any part of it. It is very dangerous, because its contents can not be poured out, on the surface of the skin, but inside the body, if the capsule containing pus is overfilled. In this case, there is a high risk of developing phlegmon and sepsis.

A sick cow should be placed in a warm and dry place, special attention should be paid to cleanliness in the room where the animal is kept. An abscess in cows, like in other animals, is treated surgically. The contents of the capsule must be released outside to prevent blood contamination. The procedure can be performed by a veterinarian, but if desired, the farmer himself is able to provide assistance to the female cow. For this you will need:

  • alcohol,
  • scalpel,
  • pure gauze or napkins,
  • a large amount of cotton wool
  • pus collection tank
  • antiseptic in the form of a spray,
  • ointment Levomekol.

Before carrying out the procedure, you need to wash your hands, treat them with antiseptic, wear sterile gloves. It is desirable to introduce a solution with novocaine in the area on the border of the abscess and healthy tissue so that the cow does not feel pain. The site of intervention is carefully treated with antiseptic.

Precise movement with a scalpel opens the abscess at its highest point. From the inside, pus will start to stand out immediately. It is collected in a container - a bucket or a vessel, so as not to spread the infection indoors. When the contents of the capsule is completely out, the pocket should be treated with an antiseptic. It is important to remove all the pus from the cavity, carefully processing all the folds. You can wash it from the aspirator furatsilinom.

The next stage is ointment treatment Levomekol. It plentifully greases a cavity, whence pus left, and also the place of dissection. In the future, the intervention site is treated as an open wound.

Attention! It is important to monitor the condition of the wound every day, and if necessary, flush it inside so that pus does not accumulate there again. At the dissection site impose a sterile breathable bandage. It should be changed daily.

Drug treatment

With extensive or multiple abscesses, the cow will be prescribed broad-spectrum antibiotics - Oxytetracycline, Bicillin. This is especially true if it has developed due to other diseases - mastitis, endometriosis or ungulate rot.

Since the appearance of ulcers is characteristic of individuals with low immune status, a sick cow is recommended to improve the diet and take a course of treatment with vitamins.


Abscesses most often disturb individuals with weakened immunity. There is a high risk of their occurrence in animals that have undergone severe infectious diseases, as well as those whose diet is poor, and the conditions of detention are poor. To reduce the likelihood of formation of ulcers in cows, it is necessary to improve their conditions, diversify the diet, enter vitamins and mineral supplements into it.

It is important to monitor the health status of cows - to prevent the development of purulent mastitis, endometriosis and other diseases that can provoke the appearance of abscesses. Regular inspection of animals after grazing and timely treatment of damage to the skin will help prevent the formation of purulent foci of inflammation.

An abscess can deprive the animal of life if the farmer does not help him, because the capsule, which is filled with pus, can burst at any time. As a result, the contents will be poured out into the adjacent tissues, which will lead to the development of cellulitis, and then blood infection. That is why it is important not to start an abscess treatment.

Udder abscess

On the appearance of boils on the mammary glands of the cow should be told separately. This phenomenon is considered a consequence of purulent-catarrhal mastitis. Sometimes inflammations are present in the genital and other organs. Bruises, shots, injuries cause an udder abscess.

During the course of the disease, cavities appear in the center of the abscesses, in which pus accumulates. Often located near the abscesses are connected, the affected area becomes larger.

The danger of formations on the udder lies in deep abscesses. When they burst, their contents are poured into the milk ducts. In this way milk is given with an admixture, not suitable for human consumption and calves.

The beginning of the process is determined by the following symptoms:

  1. pus enzymes enter the bloodstream
  2. cow shivering and fever,
  3. rapid breathing and pulse,
  4. the affected portion of the udder is larger, dense and bumpy.

If abscesses have formed deeply, it will be more difficult to detect them even when palpating the udder.

The occurrence of an abscess can be judged by the appearance of pus in the milk and a decrease in milk production, sometimes even by half. When the acute period gives way to a chronic one, the condition of the cows improves.