Throughout the estrous cycle the mammalian endometrium undergoes morphological and functional changes that are essential for the establishment of pregnancy and proper ovarian and uterine functions. Among these changes, the most important are alterations in both inter- and intracellular signalling molecules, many of which modulate immune processes. In the endometrial tissue there are local innate (nonspecific) and adaptive (specific/acquired) response mechanisms which vary because of the endocrine status during the estrous cycle, pregnancy and postpartum period. Endometrial cells have responses that support the immune system by producing pro-inflammatory factors such as cytokines, sensors, effector molecules and chemokines. This response is important during gestation, pregnancy, and fetal growth, as well as in preventing infection, and immuno-rejection of the semi-allogeneic embryo. In dairy cows, both before and immediately after calving, there are marked changes in the values for hormonal and metabolic variables and the immune status is impaired. Thus, in several studies there has been assessment of the physiological and/or abnormal maternal immune changes and possible effects on dairy cow reproductive performance. The objective with this review is to summarize the novel information about the immune mechanisms involved during the postpartum period, subsequent peri-implantation period and pregnancy in dairy cows, and the possible effects on reproductive performance. This information provides for an enhanced understanding of the local and systemic immune responses associated with the metabolic and hormonal status of dairy cows, and alterations in the immune system of high producing cows and the possible effects on subsequent fertility. Copyright © 2019 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.