Logistic Regression Analysis of Some Factors Influencing Incidence of Retained Placenta in a Holstein Dairy Herd

Document Type : Research Article


1 Department of Animal Science,Faculty of Agricultural Science, University of Gonbad Kavoos, Gonbad Kavoos, Iran

2 Department of Animal Science,Faculty of Agricultural Science, University of Birjand, Birjand, Iran

3 Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Agricultural Science, University of Guilan, Rasht, Iran

4 Agriculture Jihad Organization of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran

5 Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Agricultural Science, Fredowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran


To investigate the effects of certain factors on the rate of retained placenta, 2844 calving records from 1288 Holstein cows in a herd were used. These cows calved during year period of 2001 to 2007. A generalized statistical linear model was applied to analyze the data. Logistic regression model was applied as the statistical model. In the model, fixed effects of year, season (warm or cold) and sex and birth type (single or twin) of calf and parity and gestation length of dam were included. In data file, retained placenta incidence was introduced as binary codes: zero for healthy cows and one for cows with retained placenta and probability of code one was analyzed. Incidence of retained placenta was significantly affected by all the fixed effects included in the model. Odds ratio estimation for cold season compared to warm seasons was 0.619, which means probability of occurrence of this disease in cold season, is 39% less than in the warm season. Odds ratio estimation for female calves in comparison to male calves was 0.6, which implies that the former are 40% less probable to cause retained placenta. Probability of this disease in twin calving was 5.9 times more than singles. By increasing the parity number of the dam, the probability of experiencing retained placenta in cow increased. It could be concluded that the incidence of retained placenta may be reduced by management modifications.


Bell M.J. and Roberts D.J. (2007). Effect of twinning on the feed intake, performance and health of dairy cows. Livest. Sci. 107, 274-281.
Bicalho R.C., Galvao K.N., Warnick L.D. and Guard C.L. (2008). Stillbirth parturition reduces milk production in Holstein cows. Prev. Vet. Med. 84, 112-120.
Boyd W.L. and Sellers A.F. (1948). Some observations on post parturient cows in four separate herds as related to expulsion of their fetal membranes. Cornell. Vet. 38(3), 263-266.
Bruun J., Ersbll A.K. and Alban L. (2002). Risk factors for metritis in Danish dairy cows. Prev. Vet. Med. 54, 179-190.
Chew B.P., Keller H.F., Erb R.E. and Malven P.V. (1977). Periparturient concentrations of prolactin, progesterone and the estrogens in blood plasma of cows retaining and not retaining fetal membranes. J. Anim. Sci. 44, 1055-1060.
Du Bois P.R. and Williams D.J. (1980). Increased incidence of retained placenta associated with heat stress in dairy cows. Theriogenology. 13, 115-121.
Echternkamp S.E. (1993). Relationships between placental development and calf birth weight in beef cattle. Anim. Reprod. Sci. 32, 1-13.
Echternkamp S.E. and Gregory K.E. (1999). Effects of twinning on gestation length, retained placenta and dystocia. J. Anim. Sci. 77, 39-47.
Eddy R.G., Davies O. and David C. (1991). An economic assessment of twin births in British dairy herds. Vet. Record. 129, 526-529.
Fourichon C., Seegers H., Bareille N. and Beaudeau F. (1999). Effects of disease on milk production in the dairy cow: a review. Prev. Vet. Med. 41, 1-35.
Garnsworthy P.C., Lock A., Mann G.E., Sinclair K.D. and Webb R. (2008). Nutrition, metabolism, and fertility in dairy cows: 2. Dietary fatty acids and ovarian function. J. Dairy Sci. 91, 3824-3833.
Ghavi Hossein-Zadeh N. and Ardalan M. (2011a). Bayesian estimates of genetic parameters for metritis, retained placenta, milk fever and clinical mastitis in Holstein dairy cows via Gibbs sampling. Res. Vet. Sci. 90(1), 146-149.
Ghavi Hossein-Zadeh N. and Ardalan M. (2011b). Cow-specific risk factors for retained placenta, metritis and clinical mastitis in Holstein cows. Vet. Res. Commun. 35, 345-354.
Gregory K.E., Echternkamp S.E. and Cundiff L.V. (1996). Effects of twinning on dystocia, calf survival, calf growth, carcass traits, and cow productivity. J. Anim. Sci. 74, 1223-1233.
Gröhn Y.T., Erb H.N., Mcculloch C.E. and Saloniemi H.S. (1990). Epidemiology of reproductive disorders in dairy cattle: associations among host characteristics, disease and production. Prev. Vet. Med. 8, 25-39.
Gröhn Y.T. and Rajala-Schultz P.J. (2000). Epidemiology of reproductive performance in dairy cows. Anim. Reprod. Sci. 60, 605-614.
Heringstad B., Chang Y.M., Gianola D. and Klemetsdal G. (2005). Genetic analysis of clinical mastitis, milk fever, ketosis, and retained placenta in three lactations of Norwegian red cows. J. Dairy Sci. 88, 3273-3281.
Holtsmark M., Heringstad B., Madsen P. and Odegard J. (2008). Genetic relationship between culling, milk production, fertility, and health traits in Norwegian red cows. J. Dairy Sci. 91, 4006-4012.
Johanson J.M. and Berger P.J. (2003). Birth weight as a predictor of calving ease and perinatal mortality in Holstein cattle. J. Dairy Sci. 86, 3745-3755.
Larson L.L., Ishak M.A., Owen F.G., Erickson E.D. and Lowry S.R. (1985). Relationship of physiological factors to placental retention in dairy cattle. Anim. Reprod. Sci. 9, 31-43.
Lawson L.G., Bruun J., Coelli T., Agger J.F. and Lund M. (2004). Relationships of efficiency to reproductive disorders in Danish milk production: a stochastic frontier analysis. J. Dairy Sci. 87, 212-224.
Lima F.S., Risco C.A., Thatcher M.J., Benzaquen M.E., Archbald L.F., Santos J.E.P. and Thatcher W.W. (2009). Comparison of reproductive performance in lactating dairy cows bred by natural service or timed artificial insemination. J. Dairy Sci. 92, 5456-5466.
López-Gatius F., García-Ispierto I., Santolaria P., Yániz J., Nogareda C. and López-Béjar M. (2006). Screening for high fertility in high-producing dairy cows. Theriogenology. 65, 1678-1689.
Markusfeld O., Galon N. and Ezra E. (1997). Body condition score, health, yield and fertility in dairy cows. Vet. Record. 141, 67-72.
McEvoy J.D., Mayne C.S. and McCaughey W.J. (1995). Production of twin calves with in vitro fertilized embryos: effects on the reproductive performance of dairy cows. Vet. Record. 136, 627-632.
Moore K. and Thatcher W.W. (2006). Major advances associated with reproduction in dairy cattle. J. Dairy Sci. 89, 1254-1266.
Muller L.D. and Owens M.J. (1973). Factors associated with the incidence of retained placentas. J. Dairy Sci. 57,725-728.
Norman H.D., Wright J.R., Hubbard S.M., Miller R.H. and Hutchison J.L. (2009). Reproductive status of Holstein and Jersey cows in the United States. J. Dairy Sci. 92, 3517-3528.
Olson K.M., Cassell B.G., Mcallister A.J. and Washburn S.P. (2009). Dystocia, stillbirth, gestation length and birth weight in Holstein, Jersey and reciprocal crosses from a planned experiment. J. Dairy Sci. 92, 6167-6175.
Olynk N.J. and Wolf C.A. (2008). Economic analysis of reproductive management strategies on US commercial dairy farms. J. Dairy Sci. 91, 4082-4091.
Sammin D., Markey B., Bassett H. and Buxton D. (2009). The ovine placenta and placentitis: a review. Vet. Microbiol. 135, 90-97.
Schefers J.M., Weigel K.A., Rawson C.L., Zwald N.R. and Cook N.B. (2010). Management practices associated with conception rate and service rate of lactating Holstein cows in large, commercial dairy herds. J. Dairy Sci. 93, 1459-1467.
Schnitzenlehner S., Essel A. and Solkner J. (1998). Retained placenta: estimation of non-genetic effects, heritability and correlations to important traits in cattle. J. Anim. Breed Genet. 115, 467-478.
Sewalem A., Miglior F., Kistemaker G.J., Sullivan P. and Van Doormaal B.J. (2008). Relationship between reproduction traits and functional longevity in Canadian dairy cattle. J. Dairy Sci. 91, 1660-1668.
Siciliano-Jones J.L., Socha M.T., Tomlinson D.J. and DeFrain J.M. (2008). Effect of trace mineral source on lactation performance, claw integrity and fertility of dairy cattle. J. Dairy Sci. 91, 1985-1995.
SPSS. (2007). Statistical Package for Social Sciences Study. SPSS for Windows, Version 17. Chicago SPSS Inc.
Tallam S.K., Ealy A.D., Bryan K.A. and Wu Z. (2005). Ovarian activity and reproductive performance of dairy cows fed different amounts of phosphorus. J. Dairy Sci. 88, 3609-3618.
Thatcher W.W., Moreira F., Santos J.E.P., Mattos R.C., Lopes F.L., Pancarci S.M. and Risco C.A. (2001). Effects of hormonal treatments on reproductive performance and embryo production. Theriogenology. 55, 75-89.
Tillard M., Humblot P., Faye B., Lecomte P., Dohoo I. and Bocquier F. (2008). Post calving factors affecting conception risk in Holstein dairy cows in tropical and sub-tropical conditions. Theriogenology. 69, 443-457.
Vittinghoff E., Shiboski S.C., Glidden D.V. and McCulloch C.E. (2004). Regression Methods in Biostatistics: Linear, Logistic, Survival and Repeated Measures Models. Springer. New York.
Wetherill G.D. (1965). Retained placenta in the bovine: a brief review. Canadian Vet. J. 6(11), 290-294.