Animals2014, 4(1), 82-92; doi:10.3390/ani4010082 - published online 5 March 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The main objective of this study was to obtain scientifically sound data on the bioenergy potential of dairy manures from cows fed different levels of corn dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS). Three diets differing in corn DDGS content were formulated: 0% corn DDGS (DDGS0; control diet), 10% corn DDGS (DDGS10) and 30% corn DDGS (DDGS30). Bioenergy production was determined in psychrophilic (25 ± 1 °C) sequencing batch reactors (SBRs) fed 3 g COD L−1·day−1 during a two-week feeding period followed by a two-week react period. Compared to the control diet, adding DDGS10 and DDGS30 to the dairy cow diet increased the daily amount of fat excreted in slurry by 29% and 70%, respectively. The addition of DDGS30 increased the cows’ daily production of fresh feces and slurry by 15% and 11%, respectively. Furthermore, the incorporation of DDGS30 in the diet increased the daily amounts of dry matter (DM), volatile solids (VS), neutral detergent fiber (NDF), acid detergent fiber (ADF) and hemicellulose by 18%, 18%, 30%, 15% and 53%, respectively, compared to the control diet. While the addition of DDGS did not significantly affect the specific CH4 production per kg VS compared to the control diet, DDGS30 increased the per cow daily CH4 production by 14% compared to the control diet.
Animals2014, 4(1), 62-81; doi:10.3390/ani4010062 - published online 5 March 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This study is the first comprehensive examination of long-haul cattle being transported across Canada and off-loaded for feed, water and rest. A total of 129 truckloads were observed at one of two commercial rest stations near Thunder Bay, Ontario. Data collected included information regarding the truck driver, the trailer, the trip, the animals and animal handling. The majority of the loads stopping were feeder calves (60.94%) while 21.09% were weaned calves, and the remaining 14.84% were market weight cattle. The truck loads surveyed were in transit for, on average, 28.2 ± 5.0 hours before stopping and cattle were rested for an average of 11.2 ± 2.8 hours. These data suggest that loads stopping at the rest station were adhering to the regulations stated in the Health of Animals Act, which outline a maximum of 48 hours in transit before a mandatory stop of at least 5 hours for feed, water and rest. There was a large amount of variability around how well recommendations, such as stocking density were followed. Further research is required to assess how well cattle are coping with long-distance transport under current regulations and industry practices.
Animals2014, 4(1), 45-58; doi:10.3390/ani4010045 - published online 27 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The facial expressions and body postures of dogs can give helpful information about their moods and emotional states. People can more effectively obedience train their dogs if we can identify the mannerisms associated with learning in dogs. The aim of this study was to clarify the dog’s body language during operant conditioning to predict achievement in the test that followed by measuring the duration of behaviors. Forty-six untrained dogs (17 males and 26 females) of various breeds were used. Each session consisted of 5 minutes of training with a treat reward followed by 3 minutes of rest and finally an operant conditioning test that consisted of 20 “hand motion” cues. The operant tests were conducted a total of nine times over three consecutive days, and the success numbers were counted. The duration of the dog’s behavior, focusing on the dog’s eyes, mouth, ears, tail and tail-wagging, was recorded during the operant conditioning sessions before the test. Particular behaviors, including wide-eyes, closed mouth, erect ears, and forward and high tail carriage, without wagging or with short and quick wagging, related to high achievement results. It is concluded that dogs' body language during operant conditioning was related to their success rate.
Animals2014, 4(1), 35-44; doi:10.3390/ani4010035 - published online 3 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: In the last decade the number of bioscience journals has increased enormously, with many filling specialised niches reflecting new disciplines and technologies. The emergence of open-access journals has revolutionised the publication process, maximising the availability of research data. Nevertheless, a wealth of evidence shows that across many areas, the reporting of biomedical research is often inadequate, leading to the view that even if the science is sound, in many cases the publications themselves are not “fit for purpose”, meaning that incomplete reporting of relevant information effectively renders many publications of limited value as instruments to inform policy or clinical and scientific practice [1–21]. A recent review of clinical research showed that there is considerable cumulative waste of financial resources at all stages of the research process, including as a result of publications that are unusable due to poor reporting . It is unlikely that this issue is confined to clinical research [2–14,16–20].
Animals2014, 4(1), 16-34; doi:10.3390/ani4010016 - published online 21 January 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Laboratory classes in which animals are seriously harmed or killed, or which use cadavers or body parts from ethically debatable sources, are controversial within veterinary and other biomedical curricula. Along with the development of more humane teaching methods, this has increasingly led to objections to participation in harmful animal use. Such cases raise a host of issues of importance to universities, including those pertaining to curricular design and course accreditation, and compliance with applicable animal welfare and antidiscrimination legislation. Accordingly, after detailed investigation, some universities have implemented formal policies to guide faculty responses to such cases, and to ensure that decisions are consistent and defensible from legal and other policy perspectives. However, many other institutions have not yet done so, instead dealing with such cases on an ad hoc basis as they arise. Among other undesirable outcomes this can lead to insufficient student and faculty preparation, suboptimal and inconsistent responses, and greater likelihood of legal challenge. Accordingly, this paper provides pertinent information about the evolution of conscientious objection policies within Australian veterinary schools, and about the jurisprudential bases for conscientious objection within Australia and the USA. It concludes with recommendations for the development and implementation of policy within this arena.