Can disbudding of calves (one versus four weeks of age) induce chronic pain?

Background Calf disbudding is a welfare-relevant invasive husbandry procedure. While it is widely recognized that disbudding elicits acute pain, its chronic consequences are currently unknown. Objectives Primary aim of this study was to investigate whether disbudding leads to chronic pain in calves; secondary aim was to evaluate the influence of age at disbudding (1 week versus […]

Behavioral and physiological assessment of liquid nitrogen cryoablation to prevent horn development in dairy calves

The aim of this series of studies was to evaluate the behavioral and physiological responses (experiment 1), the electroencephalographic response (experiment 2), and the efficacy (experiment 3) of cryoablation to determine if it could provide an alternative to cautery disbudding (DB) for calves. In experiment 1, at approximately 3 d of age, 58 female Friesian dairy […]

A first description of the physiological and behavioural responses to disbudding in goat kids

In order to determine the stress response to disbudding, physiological and behavioural response was investigated in disbudded kids and compared with a control group. Disbudded kids (n = 14), were disbudded by thermal cauterisation, and control kids (n = 15) received the same management without being disbudded. Cortisol was measured at −20, −10 and 0 […]

Play behavior as an indicator of animal welfare: Disbudding in dairy calves

Play behavior may be reduced during negative experiences (e.g. pain) and serve as an indicator of animal welfare. To test this, the effects of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) and a local anesthetic (LA) on dairy calf play behavior and wound sensitivity of calves after hot-iron disbudding (DB) were examined. Forty-six calves were assigned to […]

Cortisol and pain-related behavior in disbudded goat kids with and without cornual nerve block

Plasma cortisol and behavior were measured in disbudded goat kids with and without the use of cornual nerve block. A total of 45 kids were used in 5 experimental groups (n = 9, males and females). Group LidoD was infiltrated with 1 mL of 2% lidocaine locally at the cornual branches of lacrimal and infratrochlear […]

Stakeholder views on treating pain due to dehorning dairy calves

A common and painful management practice undertaken on most dairy farms is dehorning young calves (also called ‘disbudding’ when done on calves less than about two months of age). Despite much evidence the practice is painful, and effective means available to mitigate this pain, it is frequently performed without pain relief. The overall aim of […]

Attitudes of beef producers to disbudding and perception of pain in cattle

Pain is an indicator of welfare status in livestock, and attitudes play a key role in the assessment and treatment of pain in animals. Veterinarians’ and dairy producers’ perceptions of cattle pain are affected by gender, age and work experience. The aim of this paper was to study beef producers’ attitudes regarding disbudding as well […]

Study investigating the attitudes and opinions of cattle farmers and veterinarians in the UK on the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for post-disbudding analgesia of calves

The study examined cattle farmers’ and veterinarians’ opinions of pain-induced distress associated with disbudding and attitudes towards non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). An emphasis was placed on investigating pain perception, veterinary-client communication and factors influencing analgesic use. Data were collected from an online questionnaire, links to which were published in professional periodicals, promoted by industry organisations […]