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Animal Welfare. Tamara Rowland AXED 590- Ag Issues November 27, 2007. Presentation Outline. Terms to know Animal Welfare issues in the Beef Industry Animal Welfare issues in the Swine Industry Animal Welfare Issues in the Dairy Industry Animal Welfare Issues in the Poultry Industry

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Animal Welfare

Tamara Rowland

AXED 590- Ag Issues

November 27, 2007

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Presentation Outline

  • Terms to know

  • Animal Welfare issues in the Beef Industry

  • Animal Welfare issues in the Swine Industry

  • Animal Welfare Issues in the Dairy Industry

  • Animal Welfare Issues in the Poultry Industry

  • Animal Welfare in Rodeo

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Terms to Know

Animal Welfare

  • “Is a human responsibility that encompasses all aspects of animal well-being, including proper housing, management, disease prevention, and treatment, responsible care, humane handling, and when necessary, humane euthanasia.”

  • --American Veterinary Medical Association

From Non-Producer:

From producer:

  • Receives food, water, and shelter

  • Protection from predators

  • Prevention and treatment of diseases

  • Animal Boredom

  • Social Deprivation

  • Psychological Well-being

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Animal Welfare

  • Animal welfare proponents seek to improve the treatment and wellbeing of animals.

  • Animal welfare proponents believe that humans can interact with animals in entertainment, industry, sport and recreation, but that the interaction should include provisions for the proper care and management for all animals involved.

  • Animal welfare proponents support self-regulation of animal sports, including rodeo, polo, three-day eventing, FFA competitions, horse racing, field trips and endurance riding.

  • Animal welfare groups utilize scientific evidence to base animal care and handling guidelines.

-- Animal Welfare Council

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Beef Industry

  • Branding

  • Castration

  • Transportation

  • Slaughter

  • Feed Lots

~ Burnt Well Guest Ranch- Roswell

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What is it

  • Form of ID dating back to Ancient Egypt ~ 4500 years


  • Permanent unalterable id, which enables the rancher to prove ownership

  • Readily identifiable mark for stockmen who are grazing their animals along with animals owned by other ranchers or on open range.

Welfare Issues

  • Creates 3rd degree burns

  • Stressor- causing cattle to lose weight

  • Repeated branding with different owners-

    • Lowers hide values by $7/head cost of $196,266,420 annually to the industry

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  • Don’t Brand

  • Freeze Brand

  • Tattooing

  • Colored Ear Tags

  • Microchip

  • Nose Printing

  • Depigments

~ Burnt Well Guest Ranch- Roswell

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What is it

  • Sterilizing calves

  • Done at 2 weeks- 2 months when calves are branded

    • Safer for the person doing it and there is less blood loss at a young age


  • Tenderness of Meat

  • Manageability of the Animal

Welfare Issues

  • Cattle are too young

  • Knife

  • Emasculators- pliers

  • Elastrator- Rubber Bands

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  • Don’t castrate

    • + Bulls are more efficient at converting food

    • + Bulls produce leaner meat

    • - Packers dock bull carcasses by $150/head

    • - Stress causes carcass darkening

  • Immunological Castration

    • Hormone releasing agent

    • Causes growth that is between a steer and a bull

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What is it

  • From ranch to feed lots in potbelly trailers.

Welfare Issues

  • Loses stemming from bruising, injured backs, dark clutters, shipping fever, and other stressors as high as 25%

  • Loading and unloading roughness/ use of hotshots

  • Exposure to extreme temperatures

  • Rough travel causes bruises, stress, and weight loss.


  • Air Ride

  • Floors that reduce slippage

  • Reduce Noise and exhaust

  • Preconditioning and back grounding cattle

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What is it

  • Ranch or feedlot > holding pen > inspection> shocked> hoisted> cut

Welfare Issues

  • In Muslim & Kosher Slaughter stunning cattle is forbidden

    • Hoisted while still conscious


  • Hanging by chin is preferred by animals

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Feed Lot

What is it

  • Station between ranch and Slaughter

    • Castration, branding, and dehorning

Welfare Issues

  • Design

  • Diet


  • Redesign to make animal friendly

  • Diet that eliminates liver abscesses

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Swine Industry

  • Sows

  • Farrowing

  • Piglets

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What is it

  • Kept in gestation stalls while they are pregnant

  • 2ft wide 7 ft long 3 ft high

    • Vast majority of their productive lives 3-5 years


  • Environmentally controlled situation

  • Fed and cared by a minimal & unskilled labor force

  • Maintained with minimal feed

  • Cuts down on fighting, biting, wounds, and competition

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Welfare Issues

  • Lack of exercise and boredom

  • Have more reproductive problems

    • Failure to become pregnant after mating

    • Higher incidence of mastitis, metritis, agalactia

    • Prolonged farrowing time

    • Increased sow morbidity at farrowing

  • Foot and leg problems

  • Urinary tract diseases

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  • Crates with Hinged Sides

  • Toys

  • Runs

  • Add Straw

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What is it

  • kept in crate about the size of a gestation stall


  • Devised to prevent sows from crushing piglets

Welfare Issues

  • Correlated with pig diseases

    • Dystocia, agalactia, wasting

  • Frustration from normal maternal behavior

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  • Circular crates

  • Creep area to attract piglets

  • Freedom System- Sow comes and goes as she wants

    • Raised threshold that sow can easily step over but piglets can’t till about weaning

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Welfare Issues

  • Vaccination, ear notching, teeth clipping, tail docking, and castration

    • Done at same time

  • Early Weaning- 3-4 weeks

    • Usually 12-15 weeks


  • Ear notch- micro chip or dye pigments

  • Teeth clipping- only clip if needed

  • Docking tails- provide more space group those that bite together

  • Castration-few reach sexual maturity before market weight

  • Early Weaning- leave in farrowing crate

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Dairy Industry

  • Cow

  • Calf

  • Veal

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What is it

  • Pasture

  • Tie Stall

  • Free Stall

  • Dry lot

Welfare Issues

  • Stall housing- doesn’t allow for grooming, exercise etc.

  • Dry lots- Similar to feed lots

  • Free stalls- poor flooring, waste removal

  • Systems don’t allow for grazing on pasture

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  • Stall housing- turn out on pasture ~5 hours a day

  • On dry lots make adjustments similar to feed lots

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Welfare Issues

  • Early separation

    • 3 days (usually suckle for 7months)

  • Housing calves individually


  • Early separation- done to improve calf and human involvement

  • Housing- disease prevention and reduces mortality


  • Early separation- improves welfare cattle later in life

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What is it

  • “as seen as ‘torturing’ calves to produce an expensive product consumed by a small portion of the population” – Farm Animal Welfare

Welfare Issues

  • Positive correlation between behavioral deprivation and stress, disease and anomalies

  • Can’t turn to groom themselves > frustration

  • Only milk fed > rumen and its microflora develop unnaturally resulting in ulcers and predisposing to enterities and indigestion

  • Reduced iron intake > causing anemia

  • Frustration from not sucking >consume more milk causing digestive problems

  • Slotted Floors

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  • Group Housing

    + reduces above issues

    - Causes intersucking & urine drinking

    - Less aggressive don’t get proper amounts of feed

    + computer controlled transponder activated system

    + Group housing vs pen shows no different in palatability of meat

    - Greater Disease- doubled the amount of deaths and 25% greater health problems

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  • Hens

  • Broilers

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What is it

Natural egg production is 70 eggs/year

  • 275 eggs/per year


  • Chicken is less expensive than the pen

    • Up to six birds per cage

Welfare Issues

  • System encourages cannibalism

  • Debeaking

  • Hot blade trimming

  • Lack of exercise

  • Laser Trimming

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Welfare Issues

  • Cages don’t allow from inspection

  • Agitaged

  • Dustbathing

  • Concentration camp

  • Forced Molting

  • Wire Floors


  • Vertical space with perches

  • Genetic alteration

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What is it

  • Birds are introduced at one day of age and kept together for 7 weeks in groups of 10 thousand- 20 thouasand.

Welfare Issues

  • Rapid Growth doesn’t support bone development

  • Food restriction


  • Reduce Nutrients

  • Free range conditions

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“The rodeo is where terrified baby cows run away from lariat-swinging horsemen just before their bodies are snapped backwards by a noose fastened onto their necks, burning, bruising and sometimes breaking their necks. The rodeo is where frenzied horses gyrate violently, not because that is their nature, but solely because of the bucking strap- the spurs belted into their flanks. The rode is where steers are team roped, one lasso around their legs, another around their heads, yanked in opposite directions, swung in the air, and slammed to the ground, and where on occasion their horns crack and splinter.

The rodeo is about intimidation and abuse of those weaker than us. It is about brutality and cruelty and injustice, forcing fear and pain on the innocent, defenseless beings and violating the basic principles of freedom and peace. As a violent and exploitative part of out culture, rodeos should not be tolerated. It should be boycotted and put out of business.

Miller- letter to the editor- Northern California newspaper

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Rough Stock

What is it

  • Bulls and broncs are breed for competition.

  • Bucked only 1 time a day 3-30 times a year

Welfare Issues

  • Roping

  • Bucking straps

  • Spurs


  • Rules

  • Education

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Presentation Outline

Animal Welfare Council. “Animal Welfare vs. Animal Rights.”http.//

Campion, Lynn. Rodeo. The Lyons Press. 2002.

Rollin Bernard. Farm Animal Welfare. Iowa State Press. 1995.

Wooden, Wayne, Cavin Ehringer. Rodeo in America. University Press of Kansas. 1996.