Reducing stress points isn’t only important for farmers but for their livestock as well, especially for dairy cows where stress can directly impact milk production. Bioret Agri’s innovative waterbed looks to reduce those stress points in cow housing.
Adam Steward, business development manager for Bioret Agri, says their single-chamber waterbed stands out from others on the market for a few different reasons, one of which being a memory foam base.
“There’s a sheet of latex memory foam underneath and that’s a big area where we differ from other ones that are on the market. A cow steps onto a waterbed. She bottoms out. Normally, there’d be concrete underneath, we’ve got memory foam. So she’s got comfort, she’s got traction when she’s going to lie [down] and traction when she goes to get up out of the stall as well,” says Steward.
Another difference is the top layer, which features a “peach skin” finish, which Steward says is the most tissue friendly top cover available on the market. Because of this, when the cow fidgets and moves about in the stall, the risk of hock abrasion and other sores become less likely.
Heat stress can be a very real concern for dairy farmers and the Aquastar waterbed can actually provide a surface that is upwards of six degrees cooler than other options on the market.
“Because we’ve got a single water pouch on the top, the cow is going to be literally floating on that water pouch when she’s lying down. So we’re taking away your pressure points and promoting better blood flow. But also we’re able to give her a top surface that’s about six degrees cooler than any other bedding type,” says Steward.
He says the temperature difference is compared to other solutions including sand, composted bedding other traditional type mattresses. This cooler surface now allows producers to combat heat stress right in the stall, when combined with proper ventilation and curtains.