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Correlations of measurements of subclinical claw horn lesions in dairy cattle
  1. A. M. Le Fevre, BSc1,
  2. D. N. Logue, BVM&S, PhD,FRCVS1,
  3. J. E. Offer, MIBiol, PhD1,
  4. I. McKendrick, BSc, PhD2 and
  5. G. Gettinby, BSc, DPhil,CStat, FRSE3
  1. 1 The Scottish Agricultural College, Veterinary Science Division, Auchincruive, Ayr KA6 5AE
  2. 2 Biomathematic and Statistics Scotland, Kings Buildings, Edinburgh EH9 3JZ
  3. 3 Statistics and Modelling Science Department, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G 1XH

Abstract

Measurements were made of the extent of sole and white line lesions on the claws of 115 Holstein-Friesian cows on at least three and at most 16 occasions, and some cows were followed up to their third lactation. All the measurements were made between 12 weeks before calving and 45 weeks after calving. In total, 1016 repeated observations were made. Correlations were calculated between pairs of claws, between types of lesion (sole and white line), and between pairs of the different measurements (number of lesions, proportion of the claw affected, maximum severity score and proportion of the claw affected weighted for severity). The outer hind claws had the greatest extent of lesions of both types. Spearman correlation coefficients and confidence intervals measured the strength of the association. All the associations between claws were positive, suggesting that the lesions did not occur in isolation. Sole and white line lesions were not associated at individual observation points. Lesions on the left and right claws were markedly similar, except for sole lesions on the two inner hind claws, and for white line lesions on the two outer hind claws.

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