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Developments in housing of cattle to promote health and welfare

Code: 9781801460941
Nigel B. Cook, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA

Chapter synopsis: While housing systems have served to provide shelter and protection from predation, they have also been associated with negative effects on cow health and welfare. Efforts in the dairy sector have had significant impact on transition cow housing, feeding and resting behaviors, and protection from climate extremes. While consumers of dairy products continue to demand that cows graze pasture, cows appear to value the benefits of housing. Well-designed freestall housing, with comfortable deep bedded stalls, sized to the animals using them, in pens that promote feed access for all of the cows to eat simultaneously, within barns designed to protect the cows from extremes of climate, have proven that we can house cattle successfully. The cow continues to live within a complex hierarchical social system within these buildings, and it is incumbent on our designs to allow cows to exhibit a wide range of natural behaviors to enhance their well-being.

DOI: 10.19103/AS.2020.0084.08
Table of contents 1 Introduction 2 Natural behaviors 3 Housing adaptations to feeding behavior 4 Group management of dairy cattle 5 Promoting optimal resting behavior 6 Responses to extreme climate 7 Enhancements to natural behavior 8 Conclusion 9 Where to look for further information 10 References

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