Assessing farmers’ knowledge, attitude and practices in managing mastitis in Katabi Towm Council, Entebbe
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Diseases among dairy cattle are a great hindrance to the profitability of the dairy sector of which mastitis produces significant economic losses. This study assessed farmers’ knowledge, attitude, and practices regarding the management of mastitis in cattle on their farms. The study was done in Katabi town council, Entebbe, Wakiso district. This was a descriptive cross-sectional study that employed only quantitative methods of data collection. Data was collected from 93 dairy farmers. A semi-structured questionnaire and a checklist were used to collect data from study participants through face to face and observation techniques. Logistic regression analysis was used to analyse study findings. Almost half ,46.8%, of the study respondents were not aware if mastitis can occur without any signs and symptoms. Whereas 86% agreed that it is necessary to regularly check for mastitis, there was no evidence of regular mastitis checking among 79.6% of the study respondents. According to farmers’ knowledge, the major cause of mastitis was micro-organisms/ infection (65.4%) and 76.5% reported that the source of infection is poor hygiene. 71% agreed that it is necessary to use lubricant during milking. Only 17.2% carried out regular mastitis checking and 71% did not do the proper milking method. There was a high level of knowledge and positive attitudes of respondents regarding mastitis disease. However, majority of the respondents didn’t practice what they actually knew. Production department should continuously prioritize vigorous sensitization of farmers about mastitis disease. This study recommends that identification of the practices associated with mastitis will help to take necessary steps to reduce the prevalence mastitis. The most effective way to control mastitis is to take preventive measures such as regular cleaning of the floor, keeping the udder clean, milkman's cleanliness, and dry cow therapy especially in high yielding cows.