Article Text

Behaviour of lame and normal dairy cows in cubicles and in a straw yard
  1. SS Singh,
  2. WR Ward,
  3. K Lautenbach and
  4. RD Murray
  1. Department of Veterinary Clinical Science and Animal Husbandry, University of Liverpool, Leahurst, Neston, South Wirral.

Abstract

The behaviour of normal cows in cubicles was compared with that of normal cows in a straw yard and that of lame cows in cubicles. The normal cows in a straw yard lay down for longer in total (9.6 hours vs 6.8 hours) and during the night (8.55 hours vs 4.75 hours) and for significantly longer at a time (3.95 hours vs 2.45 hours) than normal cows in cubicles. The normal cows in a straw yard spent more time lying down and ruminating (5.1 hours) than normal cows in cubicles (3.3 hours). Lame cows in cubicles lay down for significantly longer during the day (3.3 hours) than normal cows in cubicles (2.1 hours). Although lameness did not affect the total time the cows spent in feeding and rumination, lame cows moved about less, and they adopted abnormal postures suggesting discomfort.

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