You are here: Home / Journal Articles / Gentle touching in early life reduces avoidance distance and slaughter stress in beef cattle / About

Gentle touching in early life reduces avoidance distance and slaughter stress in beef cattle

By Johanna K. Probst, Anet Spengler Neff, Florian Leiber, Michael Kreuzer, Edna Hillmann

View Resource (HTM)

Licensed under

Category Journal Articles
Abstract

This study investigated the effect of gentle touching applied during the early life of suckler beef calves on avoidance distance on-farm and stress reactions at the abattoir. Twenty-seven Limousin crossbred calves were assigned to a treatment (n=13) or a control group (n=14) balanced by sex and day of birth. Gentle touching, using the TTouch© method, began on the second day post partum and was continued on the following 2 days. Additional touching was conducted on 3 non-consecutive days during the following 3 weeks in the home pen. Each treatment lasted for 10min and was repeated once after 30min. Individual avoidance distance was assessed 6 times. Following this test, all voluntary approaches towards the test person were recorded. All animals were slaughtered at 10 months of age. Behaviour was observed during lairage and in the stunning chute. Blood samples were taken during exsanguination at the abattoir, and concentrations of cortisol, lactate and glucose were analysed. Samples of the Musculus longissimus dorsi were subjected to cooking loss measurements, Warner Bratzler shear force and meat colour traits. The treatment calves showed smaller avoidance distances (P

Publication Title Applied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume 139
Issue 1
Pages 42-49
ISBN/ISSN 0168-1591
DOI 10.1016/j.applanim.2012.03.002
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

Tags
  1. Calves
  2. Handling
  3. Human-animal relationships
  4. Meat.
  5. stimulation