Farm Animal Cognition—Linking Behavior, Welfare and Ethics

Farm animal welfare is a major concern for society and food production. To more accurately evaluate animal farming in general and to avoid exposing farm animals to poor welfare situations, it is necessary to understand not only their behavioural but also their cognitive needs and capacities. Thus, general knowledge of how farm animals perceive and […]

Feed barrier design affects behaviour and physiology in goats

Among other things, feed barrier design for goats can differ with regard to ease of leaving, backward view, and presence of physical separation. The aim of our study was to investigate whether the type of feed barrier influences agonistic behaviour and stress. The study involved 55 adult non-lactating female goats of several Swiss dairy breeds. […]

Gender-specific effects of prenatal stress on emotional reactivity and stress physiology of goat kids

The aims of this study were to investigate the effects of maternal stress during pregnancy on the emotional reactivity, the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenocortical (HPA) axis, and the sympatho-adrenomedullary (SAM) system of goat offspring according to their gender, and to investigate the role of maternal cortisol in prenatal stress effects. Goats were exposed to ten transports in isolation […]

Perceptions of the importance of different welfare issues in livestock production

The opinions of seven respondent groups about the relative importance of different practices pertaining to the welfare of Australian beef cattle, sheep and goats were surveyed. Respondent groups comprised farmers, livestock transportation representatives, veterinarians, meat processors, animal welfare advocates, animal welfare scientists and government officers. The survey consisted of a web-based adaptive conjoint analysis questionnaire, […]

Hydration State of Goats Transported by Road for 12 Hours During the Hot-Dry Conditions and the Modulating Role of Ascorbic Acid

This study investigated the effects of 12 hr of road transportation during the hot-dry conditions and the modulating role of ascorbic acid (AA) on the hydration state of goats. Twenty goats who served as treatment goats received oral administration of 100 mg/kg body weight of AA, whereas another 20 control goats received sterile water; thereafter, […]

Hair coat condition: A valid and reliable indicator for on-farm welfare assessment in adult dairy goats

The aim of this study is to gather information about the possibility of including the hair coat condition as an animal-based indicator in an on-farm welfare assessment protocol for adult dairy goats. Validity was tested in two repetitions performed in Portugal and Italy, in order to increase the sample size. Two homogeneous groups of 24 […]

Autonomic nervous system reactivity in a free-ranging mammal: effects of dominance rank and personality

Modulation of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) activity allows animals to effectively respond to internal and external stimuli in everyday challenges via changes in, for example, heart and respiration rate. Various factors, ranging from social such as dominance rank to internal such as personality or affective states can impact animal physiology. Our knowledge of the […]

Positive and negative gestational handling influences placental traits and mother-offspring behavior in dairy goats

Dairy animals are subjected to a number of potential stressors throughout their lives, including daily interactions with humans. The quality of these interactions may have direct consequences for the animal undergoing the experience, but if such events occur during gestation it may also affect the developing fetus. This study examined the effects of differential handling […]

Evaluation of the efficacy of a non-penetrating captive bolt to euthanase neonatal goats up to 48 hours of age

Manual blunt force trauma is a common method of euthanasia or culling of goat kids, however it is difficult to apply consistently and may vary in effectiveness. Therefore, a controlled mechanical method is needed. The overall objective of this research was to evaluate the effectiveness of a non-penetrating captive bolt (NPCB) to euthanase goats (Capra […]

Acupuncture Needle Stimulation on Some Physiological Parameters After Road Transport and Physical Exercise in Horse

The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of acupuncture (AG) treatment on some hematochemical parameters in five Thoroughbred horses after road transport and exercise. Horses competed in two official races. For each race, animals were transported from their stables to the racetrack. Horses transported and competed in the first race represent the […]