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Moos News

ProAction Initiative Updates

This page will be used to provide you with the latest news regarding updates to the ProAction Initiatives:

As most of you are aware by now, the Dairy Code of Practice was updated recently with a number of changes to take effect over the next number of years. Below is a list of the key changes that are effective as of April 2024.

See details below
(as well as previous and past updates)


Calf Housing

  • Tethering is not allowed when housed “indoors.”

  • If tethered, must be by a collar and must have access to exit, go outside of the hutch.

  • Develop a plan to pair or group house calves if not already doing so.

  • Calves must have the ability to have physical contact with other calves, including if housed in hutches outdoors – unless isolation is needed for health concerns or inclement weather.

Cow Housing

  • Newly built barns must give daily access freedom of movement and social interactions year round.

  • Tethers must allow the animal to comfortably turn their head around to rest – stanchions are not allowed under any circumstances.

  • Electrified crowd gates are not allowed.

  • Electrified trainers must be used on an individual training basis.

  • Stocking density cannot exceed 1.2 cows/stall in free-stall systems. 

  • Resting/pack areas in group pens must allow at least 100 square feet.


Calving Area

  • Newly built barns must allow cows to calve loose in an area where they can turn around such as a pen, yard or pasture.


  • Calves must be:

    • gradually weaned;

    • minimum 5 days weaning period;

    • at least 8 weeks old at weaning completion;

Health Practices 

  • Castration:

    • done as early as possible;

    • use local anesthesia AND systemic analgesia;

  • Tail Docking:

    • not unless medically necessary;

    • pain control must be used ;

  • Disease Recording

    • - events, treatments, mortalities (and cause if known) must be recorded;

    • - records must be kept for 3 years;

  • Calf Mortality

    • - if mortality of calves 2 days of age or older exceeds 10%, corrective actions must be taken in consultation with a veterinarian or other qualified advisor;

Down Cows

  • Apparatus that are designed to lift, move, and support down cattle must be used according to the manufacturer’s specifications.

  • Hip lifters must only be used to lift an animal for a short duration - they must never be used to move down cattle. 

  • Down cattle must not be moved by hoisting by chain, dragging, or lifting without adequate body support.

  • Personnel must not repeatedly encourage a down animal to rise if it has demonstrated it cannot get up or move.

  • If an electric prod is used, it must be used in consultation with a veterinarian and only applied on the rear flank and upper rear leg (twice at maximum) when absolutely necessary to determine if the animal can rise or if euthanasia needs to be considered.



  • Personnel must be aware of this Code of Practice and must follow the Requirements of this Code of Practice.

  • Personnel must have the competence to carry out the procedures that they are responsible for.

  • Managers must supervise personnel and must retrain them if practices begin to fall below standards of care.

While all of the above requirements are in effect as of now with regards to the Code of Practice, the DFC Proaction Committee have ongoing discussions about the incorporation of the new code into Proaction requirements.


September 2021 brings the final round of major ProAction implementations (hopefully). This involves both the rollout of the Environment module and the requirement for all producers to report their Traceability information to DairyTrace.

See details below
(as well as previous updates)

ProAction Environment Module (Dec 2021)


We have been getting questions about having an Environmental Farm Plan (EFP) as a requirement for ProAction going forward. It will be incorporated and become a requirement for all, and just recently there are some in-class offerings for courses. Until this becomes widely available, it is unlikely to be enforced very strictly. If you currently have an EFP, it will be good for 10 years. You can renew an EFP online. 

Don’t worry too much about the EFP starting in September 2021, you are just required to be up to date on this module when your next full validation comes around. 

Veterinarians are not the main trainers for this final ProAction module, which is different from the previous modules. Questions regarding the Environment module should be mainly directed at your FSR, since we are not receiving the most up-to-date information about this final round of requirements. 

Traceability – DairyTrace (Dec 2021)


Traceability reporting to DairyTrace becomes mandatory for all producers
starting September 2021.

Sign up for your account today! 


How do I get started with DairyTrace?

  • Call DairyTrace to set up your account: 1-866-558-7223 Have your premise ID ready when you call in. 


What formats are available for DairyTrace?

  • There is a phone-in system, a smart phone app, and a website. 


If I have the Traceability module on my DairyComp, do I need to report to DairyTrace?

  • No you do not, this will report to the database for you. 


If I was reporting to the CLTS database, do I have to report to both?

  • You just need to report to DairyTrace. 


What do I need to report to DairyTrace?

1. Animal births within 45 days of birth or before they leave the farm. 

a. You do NOT need to report heifers if you get them registered with Holstein Canada - HC will do it for you. 

b. Bull calves will be the main thing most producers will need to report. Remember to do them before they leave your farm!


2. Animal move-ins

a. You need to include the animal number, date of arrival, Premise ID of your farm and the Premise ID of where they came from, as well as the license number of the transporter who brought them to your farm.

3. Tag Retirements

a. ONLY if the animal is tagged and disposed of on your farm. 

b. Deadstock (Atwood Resources) is retiring tags on everything that is sent to them

c. Calves that die before being tagged and are composted on-farm do not need a tag retired, if they were never assigned a tag.


What do I do with these yellow tags?

  • Yellow tags are being discontinued and replaced with white single tags for calves including those destined for the beef industry. You will be able to use yellow tags until 2023. Entering yellow tags online takes an extra step; you have to register your bunch of yellow tags first, and then assign them to a calf second. 

ProAction Environment Module (Dec 2021)


When do I need to have my Environment requirements up to date?

  • Your first full validation after September 2021 will be when you need to have your Environment requirements current.


What’s the deal with this Environmental Questionnaire? 

  • This is a self-assessment type questionnaire that needs to be done every 2 years. It has to be entered online. DFO is offering to mail a paper copy to clients, and to enter it online for clients without internet if it gets sent back; for a fee of $50. Please plan ahead for this questionnaire, since it will add time to an in-clinic visit before a validation if it is left to the last minute and we are assisting with it. 


Who do I ask about the Environment Module?

  • Although vets have been advisors for the previous ProAction modules, your DFO FSR is your point of contact and training for this final module. We can help you with as much as we can, but we are not getting the same comprehensive information about this module as we have for the previous ones, so we likely have the same questions as you!

Fine-Tuning Your SOPs – Avoid Dermatitis (Dec 2021)


Helping so many of our clients with ProAction allows me to hear feedback from many validations, so I keep a running list of the common things FSRs point out or require to be changed/corrected. Here are some things to double check are included on your SOPs before your next validation:


  • SOP 9 (Animal Health Practices) - this SOP includes not only dehorning, but also extra teat removal, castration and branding. Castration and branding have a red asterisk meaning they are required elements,  however, if you don’t do these practices on your farm, you should remove them from your SOP. It will bring up an alert that you are deleting a required element, but you just have to click ok. You can also write in the comment section at the bottom that these are never done on the farm. 

Action: Remove bullet points about castration and branding
if they are never done on your farm.

  • SOP 10 (Euthanasia) – as much detail as you can provide is best for this SOP. This includes exactly who performs euthanasia (list all people), as well as how your deadstock is dealt with (indicate if they are sent to Atwood Resources).


  • SOP 12/13 (Introducing New Cattle/Returning Cattle) – make sure you add details about where these animals would go in the event you have to bring an animal in. I know many of our herds are closed herds and don’t have to worry about this, but the FSRs are still requiring it. Just make sure you indicate a specific location (pen/tie stall) where they would go upon arrival. 


  • SOP 14 (Visitors) – again, details are the key with this one. Describe where things like garbage disposal for gloves/boot covers are.


ProAction Environment Module (Feb. 2021)

This module is still set to come into enforcement September 2021. Your DFO FSRs will be facilitating the training, instead of vets for this module. Please take note if you previously were a June, July, or August validation date and previously had almost a year before your validations with new requirements, because of the shift in months due to COVID you are now in the guinea pig group and have to be ready in for validations including the environment module this fall.

ProAction Cattle Health Declarations and Prescriptions (Feb 2021)


Due to the shift in months for validations because of COVID, it may happen that your Cattle Health Declaration and Vet Prescriptions get signed past the 12-month expiry that they have. Try to remember to have these signed on the 12 month rotation if possible, even though you won’t be due for a validation. We were hoping that validators would be forgiving of this but a few veterinarians have reported some complaints from FSRs, so it’s better to be safe than sorry!  

ProAction Traceability – The Update You've All Been Waiting For!


DairyTrace, the new national cattle traceability system for dairy, was launched on Oct. 5, 2020. Aligned with ProAction requirements, the DairyTrace program will be run by Lactanet Canada, as the responsible administrator for dairy cattle traceability. General information about the system will be sent to producers in the form of a welcome kit via the October issue of Milk Producer magazine.  In the coming weeks, producers with existing CCIA accounts will receive communication directly from DairyTrace regarding their new account activation. Producers wishing to transfer their historical traceability data from CCIA to DairyTrace will be asked to provide permissions to do so.


Traceability reporting through DairyTrace will become mandatory in September 2021.


DairyTrace customer service is already available to answer questions and update account details. Starting Oct. 5, 2020, producers will be able to report events, such as tag activation or animal movements to the dairy tracking database. 

You can reach DairyTrace customer service at 1-866-55 TRACE (558-7223)

or email


For more information, please visit the DairyTrace website at

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