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Animals, Volume 4, Issue 4 (December 2014) , Pages 583-780

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Open AccessBook Review
Animal Welfare: Focusing on the Future. By David J. Mellor and A.C. David Bayvel. OIE: Paris, France, 2014; 358 pp; €65.00; ISBN: 978-92-9044-929-4
Animals 2014, 4(4), 779-780; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040779 - 09 Dec 2014
Viewed by 2358
Abstract
This book, which is a volume in an OIE series, describes much that is relevant to animal welfare, the chapters being in English with summaries or full text in French and Spanish. As with many reviews of our state of knowledge, many contributions [...] Read more.
This book, which is a volume in an OIE series, describes much that is relevant to animal welfare, the chapters being in English with summaries or full text in French and Spanish. As with many reviews of our state of knowledge, many contributions to this volume draw on previous publications. For example, David Fraser’s excellent discussion of the globalization of farm animal welfare is explained at greater length in his 2008 paper [1] and book [2]. However, chapters on drivers of animal welfare policy in Africa, the Americas, the Far East and Australasia and the Middle East are amongst those that are novel. The description by Aidaros of Islamic teachings in relation to animal welfare is particularly welcome.[...] Full article
Open AccessArticle
Effects of Adding Corn Dried Distiller Grains with Solubles (DDGS) to the Dairy Cow Diet and Effects of Bedding in Dairy Cow Slurry on Fugitive Methane Emissions
Animals 2014, 4(4), 767-778; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040767 - 09 Dec 2014
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2286
Abstract
The specific objectives of this experiment were to investigate the effects of adding 10% or 30% corn dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS) to the dairy cow diet and the effects of bedding type (wood shavings, straw or peat moss) in dairy slurry [...] Read more.
The specific objectives of this experiment were to investigate the effects of adding 10% or 30% corn dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS) to the dairy cow diet and the effects of bedding type (wood shavings, straw or peat moss) in dairy slurry on fugitive CH4 emissions. The addition of DDGS10 to the dairy cow diet significantly increased (29%) the daily amount of fat excreted in slurry compared to the control diet. The inclusion of DDGS30 in the diet increased the daily amounts of excreted DM, volatile solids (VS), fat, neutral detergent fiber (NDF), acid detergent fiber (ADF) and hemicellulose by 18%, 18%, 70%, 30%, 15% and 53%, respectively, compared to the control diet. During the storage experiment, daily fugitive CH4 emissions showed a significant increase of 15% (p < 0.05) for the slurry resulting from the corn DDGS30 diet. The addition of wood shavings and straw did not have a significant effect on daily fugitive CH4 emissions relative to the control diet, whereas the addition of peat moss caused a significant increase of 27% (p < 0.05) in fugitive CH4 emissions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Animal Production)
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Open AccessArticle
Rabbit Feces as Feed for Ruminants and as an Energy Source
Animals 2014, 4(4), 755-766; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040755 - 05 Dec 2014
Viewed by 2792
Abstract
There are prospects for using novel feeds from various sources to provide ruminants with alternative sources of protein and energy such as by-products, and animal wastes. Rabbit feces are a concentrated source of fiber and could have commercial potential both as input biomass [...] Read more.
There are prospects for using novel feeds from various sources to provide ruminants with alternative sources of protein and energy such as by-products, and animal wastes. Rabbit feces are a concentrated source of fiber and could have commercial potential both as input biomass in anaerobic processes for biogas production, as well as a fibrous source for ruminal degradation. The aims of this work were to assess the potential as ruminant feeding and as biogas production of rabbit feces, in comparison with 12 crops. The chemical composition and the potential and experimental in vitro true digestibility (IVTD) and neutral detergent fiber digestibility (NDFD) of 148 feces samples were determined by using chemical methods, Daisy system digestibility and/or NIRS predictions. The average biomethane potential (BMP) was 286 ± 10 lCH4/kg SV with −4% vs. the crops average. Milk forage unit (milk FU), IVTD and NDFD of feces were 0.54 ± 0.06 milk FU/kg DM, 74% ± 3% and 50% ± 5%, respectively, with comparisons of −19%, −11% and −24% vs. the crops average. Reconstruction of the potential values based on the chemical constituents but using the crop partial least square model well agreed with the NIRS calibrations and cross-validation. In a global NIRS calibration of the feces and crops the relative predicted deviation for IVTD, NDFD and milk FU were 3.1, 2.9 and 2.6, respectively, and only 1.5 for BMP. Running the Daisy system for rabbit feces in rumen fluid gave some inconsistencies, weakened the functional relationships, and appeared not to be correlated with the potential values of IVTD and NDFD. Nevertheless, the energetic potential of feces appears to be similar to some conventional crops at different degrees of maturity. Thus we conclude that rabbit feces has potential value as a ruminant feed and for biogas production. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Loading and Unloading Weaned Pigs: Effects of Bedding Types, Ramp Angle, and Bedding Moisture
Animals 2014, 4(4), 742-754; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040742 - 03 Dec 2014
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2217
Abstract
The use of non-slip surfaces during loading and unloading of weaned pigs plays an important role in animal welfare and economics of the pork industry. Currently, the guidelines available only suggest the use of ramps below 20° to load and unload pigs. Three [...] Read more.
The use of non-slip surfaces during loading and unloading of weaned pigs plays an important role in animal welfare and economics of the pork industry. Currently, the guidelines available only suggest the use of ramps below 20° to load and unload pigs. Three ramp angles (0°, 10° or 20°), five bedding materials (nothing, sand, feed, wood shavings or wheat straw hay), two moistures (dry or wet bedding; >50% moisture) over two seasons (>23.9 °C summer, <23.9 °C winter) were assessed for slips/falls/vocalizations (n = 6,000 pig observations). "Score" was calculated by the sum of slips, falls, and vocalizations. With the exception of using feed as a bedding, all beddings provided some protection against elevated slips, falls, and vocalizations (P < 0.01). Providing bedding reduced (P < 0.05) scores regardless of whether the bedding was dry or wet. Scores increased as the slope increased (P < 0.01). Provision of bedding, other than feed, at slopes greater than zero, decreased slips, falls and vocalizations. The total time it took to load and unload pigs was affected by bedding type, ramp angle, and season (P < 0.05). Minimizing slips, falls, and vocalizations when loading and unloading pigs improved animal welfare. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pig Transport)
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Open AccessArticle
Ethical and Animal Welfare Considerations in Relation to Species Selection for Animal Experimentation
Animals 2014, 4(4), 729-741; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040729 - 03 Dec 2014
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3388
Abstract
Ethical principles governing the conduct of experiments with animals are reviewed, especially those relating to the choice of species. Legislation requires that the potential harm to animals arising from any procedure should be assessed in advance and justified in terms of its possible [...] Read more.
Ethical principles governing the conduct of experiments with animals are reviewed, especially those relating to the choice of species. Legislation requires that the potential harm to animals arising from any procedure should be assessed in advance and justified in terms of its possible benefit to society. Potential harms may arise both from the procedures and the quality of the animals’ lifetime experience. The conventional approach to species selection is to use animals with the “lowest degree of neurophysiological sensitivity”. However; this concept should be applied with extreme caution in the light of new knowledge. The capacity to experience pain may be similar in mammals, birds and fish. The capacity to suffer from fear is governed more by sentience than cognitive ability, so it cannot be assumed that rodents or farm animals suffer less than dogs or primates. I suggest that it is unethical to base the choice of species for animal experimentation simply on the basis that it will cause less distress within society. A set of responsibilities is outlined for each category of moral agent. These include regulators, operators directly concerned with the conduct of scientific experiments and toxicology trials, veterinarians and animal care staff; and society at large. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ethical and Social Dimensions of Animal Experimentation)
Open AccessArticle
Effects of Transfer from Breeding to Research Facility on the Welfare of Rats
Animals 2014, 4(4), 712-728; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040712 - 03 Dec 2014
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2184
Abstract
Transfer from the breeding facility to a research facility is a stressful event for laboratory animals. Heat stress has been reported to constitute one of the major concerns during transport of animals. This study measured ambient and body temperature, corticosterone and glucose levels, [...] Read more.
Transfer from the breeding facility to a research facility is a stressful event for laboratory animals. Heat stress has been reported to constitute one of the major concerns during transport of animals. This study measured ambient and body temperature, corticosterone and glucose levels, body weight, behavior and water and food intake before, during and after transfer in Wistar rats. Decreased body weight, water and food intake were observed on the day of transfer in rats. Environmental temperature strongly affected body temperature of rats and needs to be controlled. Male rats need to habituate for at least one week, females for two weeks after transfer. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Sex Differences in Physiological Acclimatization after Transfer in Wistar Rats
Animals 2014, 4(4), 693-711; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040693 - 30 Oct 2014
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3244
Abstract
Most laboratory animals used in research are vendor-bred and transferred to research facilities. Transfer procedures might have considerable and unintended effects on research results. In the present study we compared physiological and behavioral parameters before and after external and internal transfer, as well [...] Read more.
Most laboratory animals used in research are vendor-bred and transferred to research facilities. Transfer procedures might have considerable and unintended effects on research results. In the present study we compared physiological and behavioral parameters before and after external and internal transfer, as well as between transferred and non-transferred Wistar rats. The impact of both external and internal transfer on body weight, plasma corticosterone levels, heart rate, blood pressure, and locomotor activity was studied in both male and female Wistar rats, taking into account the sex differences in stress responsivity. External transfer was found to decrease body weight, increase plasma corticosterone, increase activity, increase heart rate in female rats, but decrease heart rate in male rats. Parameters showed differences between the sexes and light phases. This study shows that acclimatization after transfer is sex-specific and researchers should take the sex into consideration when determining the acclimatization period. It is recommended to allow for acclimatization of at least 8 days in males and two weeks in females after external transfer and timely (2 days before starting experiments) transfer the animals internally to the testing room. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Off-Stream Watering Systems and Partial Barriers as a Strategy to Maximize Cattle Production and Minimize Time Spent in the Riparian Area
Animals 2014, 4(4), 670-692; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040670 - 29 Oct 2014
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2272
Abstract
A study was conducted in 2009 at two locations in Manitoba (Killarney and Souris), Canada to determine the impact of off-stream waterers (OSW) with or without natural barriers on (i) amount of time cattle spent in the 10 m buffer created within the [...] Read more.
A study was conducted in 2009 at two locations in Manitoba (Killarney and Souris), Canada to determine the impact of off-stream waterers (OSW) with or without natural barriers on (i) amount of time cattle spent in the 10 m buffer created within the riparian area, referred to as the riparian polygon (RP), (ii) watering location (OSW or stream), and (iii) animal performance measured as weight gain. This study was divided into three 28-day periods over the grazing season. At each location, the pasture—which ranged from 21.0 ha to 39.2 ha in size—was divided into three treatments: no OSW nor barriers (1CONT), OSW with barriers along the stream bank to deter cattle from watering at the stream (2BARR), and OSW without barriers (3NOBARR). Cattle in 2BARR spent less time in the RP in Periods 1 (p = 0.0002), 2 (p = 0.1116), and 3 (p < 0.0001) at the Killarney site compared to cattle in 3NOBARR at the same site. Cattle in 2BARR at the Souris site spent more time in the RP in Period 1 (p < 0.0001) and less time in Period 2 (p = 0.0002) compared to cattle in 3NOBARR. Cattle did use the OSW, but not exclusively, as watering at the stream was still observed. The observed inconsistency in the effectiveness of the natural barriers on deterring cattle from the riparian area between periods and locations may be partly attributable to the environmental conditions present during this field trial as well as difference in pasture size and the ability of the established barriers to deter cattle from using the stream as a water source. Treatment had no significant effect (p > 0.05) on cow and calf weights averaged over the summer period. These results indicate that the presence of an OSW does not create significant differences in animal performance when used in extensive pasture scenarios such as those studied within the present study. Whereas the barriers did not consistently discourage watering at the stream, the results provide some indication of the efficacy of the OSW as well as the natural barriers on deterring cattle from the riparian area. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Effects of Transport at Weaning on the Behavior, Physiology and Performance of Pigs
Animals 2014, 4(4), 657-669; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040657 - 27 Oct 2014
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2599
Abstract
Transport of pigs to separate production facilities at the time of weaning is a common practice, primarily performed to reduce vertical transfer of disease and enhance production and overall farm efficiency. During transport, pigs are exposed to numerous stressors in conjunction with the [...] Read more.
Transport of pigs to separate production facilities at the time of weaning is a common practice, primarily performed to reduce vertical transfer of disease and enhance production and overall farm efficiency. During transport, pigs are exposed to numerous stressors in conjunction with the stress experienced as a result of weaning. In this review, the behavioral and physiological response of pigs experiencing weaning and transport simultaneously will be described, including the effects of space allowance, season and transport duration. Based on the scientific literature, the gaps in the knowledge regarding potential welfare issues are discussed. Changes in behavior and physiology suggest that weaned pigs may experience stress due to transport. Space allowance, season and duration are aspects of transport that can have a marked impact on these responses. To date, the literature regarding the effects of transport on weaned pigs has primarily focused on the short term stress response and little is known about the effects of concurrent weaning and transport on other aspects of pig welfare including morbidity and mortality rates. Greater understanding of the short and long term consequences of transport on weaned pig welfare particularly in relation to factors such as trip duration, provision of feed and water, and best handling practices would benefit the swine industry. Furthermore, the development of guidelines and recommendations to enhance the short and long term welfare of weaned pigs in relation to transport are needed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pig Transport)
Open AccessCommentary
Is There a Need for a More Expansive Use of Ethics and Values in Reflecting on the Use of Animals in Scientific Research?
Animals 2014, 4(4), 643-656; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040643 - 10 Oct 2014
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3492
Abstract
Although reflecting a long tradition of moral reflection that the use of animals is acceptable as long as it is humane, the tension between causing harm to animals in research and the benefits to humans can nevertheless be troubling. Utilitarian arguments that appeal [...] Read more.
Although reflecting a long tradition of moral reflection that the use of animals is acceptable as long as it is humane, the tension between causing harm to animals in research and the benefits to humans can nevertheless be troubling. Utilitarian arguments that appeal to the value of those practices in sustaining and enhancing human lives, and rights-based arguments which seek to constrain them, can be inadequate. Reflecting a more engaging, inclusive and sophisticated understanding of human activity, justification for animal use could be expanded to reflect the fullness and richness of ethical thinking. This might see more explicit inclusion of perspectives borne of virtues, caring, experiences, and respect for the essence of the animal, and different ways of understanding and knowing animals, values drawn from the middle ground of commonly acceptable human-animal relationships. Such values, already clearly evident in research, could be more widely integrated into arguments justifying animal use. A more expansive approach would not only reflect reality and acknowledge that costs and benefits are shared more widely, but it might result in more equitable, effective and humane science. It might also serve to reduce some of the tension long evident in the relationship between humans and animals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ethical and Social Dimensions of Animal Experimentation)
Open AccessArticle
Effect of Season, Transport Length, Deck Location, and Lairage Length on Pork Quality and Blood Cortisol Concentrations of Market Hogs
Animals 2014, 4(4), 627-642; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040627 - 29 Sep 2014
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2194
Abstract
The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of seasonal environment, transport conditions, and time in lairage on pork quality and serum cortisol concentrations. Market hogs were slaughtered during winter (n = 535), spring (n = 645), summer (n = 644), [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of seasonal environment, transport conditions, and time in lairage on pork quality and serum cortisol concentrations. Market hogs were slaughtered during winter (n = 535), spring (n = 645), summer (n = 644), and fall (n = 488). Within season, hogs were randomly assigned to treatments in a 2 × 2 × 2 factorial arrangement, with 2 deck locations (top vs. bottom) and 2 transport and lairage durations (3 h vs. 6 h). Blood samples were collected at exsanguination for analysis of cortisol concentration. Loins were collected at 24 h postmortem for pork quality assessment. Season and deck did not have a main effect on cortisol concentrations or pork quality. Hogs transported 6 h had increased cortisol concentrations (103.0 vs. 95.5 ng/mL; P < 0.001) and decreased L* (52.49 vs. 52.69; P = 0.09), b* (6.28 vs. 6.36; P = 0.03), and hue angle (20.70 vs. 20.95; P = 0.03) compared to hogs transported 3 h. Hogs subjected to 6 h of lairage had increased 24-h pH (5.69 vs. 5.66; P = 0.005), a* (16.64 vs. 16.48; P < 0.0001), b* (6.42 vs. 6.22; P < 0.0001), saturation (17.85 vs. 17.64; P < 0.0001), and hue angle (21.01 vs. 20.65; P = 0.002) and decreased L* (52.49 vs. 52.69; P = 0.07) when compared to hogs subjected to 3 h of lairage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pig Transport)
Open AccessArticle
Leptospira spp. in Domestic Cats from Different Environments: Prevalence of Antibodies and Risk Factors Associated with the Seropositivity
Animals 2014, 4(4), 612-626; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040612 - 29 Sep 2014
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2534
Abstract
Leptospirosis is an emerging zoonotic disease of worldwide distribution. A cross-sectional study was conducted in urban and rural environments in southern Chile (1) to detect domestic cats with serologic evidence of exposure to Leptospira spp.; (2) to determine the prevalence of anti-Leptospira [...] Read more.
Leptospirosis is an emerging zoonotic disease of worldwide distribution. A cross-sectional study was conducted in urban and rural environments in southern Chile (1) to detect domestic cats with serologic evidence of exposure to Leptospira spp.; (2) to determine the prevalence of anti-Leptospira antibodies; (3) to describe seroprevalences according to different characteristics of the animals, and (4) to identify risk factors associated with the seropositivity in the Microscopic Agglutination Test (MAT). Blood samples were taken from 124 owned cats. A frequentist and Bayesian approach were applied for prevalence estimation. The overall apparent prevalence of anti-Leptospira antibodies was 8.1% (95% Confident Interval = 3.9–4.3). With the Bayesian approach, the overall True Prevalence (TP) was 5.2% (95% Credibility Interval (CrI) = 0.6–12.4). The TP for urban cats was 1.8% (95% CrI = 0.1–7.2) and the TP for rural felines was 25.2% (95% CrI = 9.3–46.6). Cats that live in a place where agricultural activities are performed with water that flows in streams or backwater and cats that live in places near flooded areas had a higher risk of seropositivity in MAT. The exposure to Leptospira spp. in domestic cats of urban and rural origin in Southern Chile is a public health concern that requires an increased awareness and the implementation of preventive measures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Zoonotic Diseases of Companion Animals)
Open AccessArticle
Tourists’ Perceptions of the Free-Roaming Dog Population in Samoa
Animals 2014, 4(4), 599-611; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040599 - 29 Sep 2014
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2675
Abstract
A study was undertaken to establish how visiting tourists to Samoa perceived free-roaming dogs (Canis familiaris) and their management, additionally some factors that influence their perceptions were assessed. Questionnaires were administered to 281 tourists across Samoa over 5 weeks. Free-roaming dogs [...] Read more.
A study was undertaken to establish how visiting tourists to Samoa perceived free-roaming dogs (Canis familiaris) and their management, additionally some factors that influence their perceptions were assessed. Questionnaires were administered to 281 tourists across Samoa over 5 weeks. Free-roaming dogs were seen by 98.2% (n = 269/274) of respondents, with 64.9% (n = 137/211) reporting that their presence had a negative effect on overall holiday experience. Respondents staying in the Apia (capital city) area were more likely to consider dogs a problem (p < 0.0001), and there was a significant association between whether the respondent owned a dog and if they thought dogs were a nuisance in Samoa (p < 0.003). Forty-four percent (20/89) of non-dog owners agreed that dogs were a nuisance compared to 22% (80/182) of dog owners. The majority felt that dogs required better control and management in Samoa (81%, n = 222) and that there were too many “stray” dogs (67.9%, n = 188). More respondents were negatively affected by the dogs’ presence (64.9%, 137/211), and felt that the dogs made their holiday worse, than respondents that felt the dogs’ presence improved their holiday experience (35.1%, 74/211). Most respondents stated that the dogs had a low impact (one to three; 68%, 187/275) on their stay in Samoa, whilst 24% (65/275) and 8% (23/275) stated they had a medium or high impact, respectively, on their stay. Respondents showed strong support for humane population management. Free-roaming dogs present a complex problem for Samoa and for its tourism industry in particular. The findings of this study further support the need for more discussion and action about the provision of veterinary services and population management for dogs in Samoa. It also provides information complementing an earlier study of the attitudes of local Samoans. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Temperature and Relative Humidity Inside Trailers During Finishing Pig Loading and Transport in Cold and Mild Weather
Animals 2014, 4(4), 583-598; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani4040583 - 29 Sep 2014
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2376
Abstract
The effect of bedding levels and trailer compartment on internal trailer temperature and relative humidity (RH) during loading and transport of finishing pigs was evaluated in cold and mild weather. Three levels of bedding were used in each experiment: 0.6 m3, [...] Read more.
The effect of bedding levels and trailer compartment on internal trailer temperature and relative humidity (RH) during loading and transport of finishing pigs was evaluated in cold and mild weather. Three levels of bedding were used in each experiment: 0.6 m3, 1.2 m3, and 2.4 m3. In mild weather, internal temperatures were lower when 1.2 m3 or 2.4 m3 of bedding were used during loading and transport compared to 0.6 m3 (P < 0.05). Internal trailer temperature increased in a quadratic fashion in the top front compartment when 1.2 m3 was used (P < 0.05), and in a linear fashion in the top rear compartment when 2.4 m3 were used in cold weather (P < 0.05). In mild weather, temperature increased linearly in the top front compartment with heavy bedding levels. Relative humidity increased in a linear fashion in the top front compartment with 0.6 m3, bottom front with 1.2 m3, and top front with 1.2 m3 in cold weather (P < 0.05). In general, temperature and RH increased as bedding levels increased in both cold and mild temperatures. Excess bedding can absorb more moisture, resulting in transport loss and decreased animal welfare. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pig Transport)
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