WELFARE INDICATORS OF DAIRY COWS - SELECTION AND IMPLEMENTATION IN ASSESSMENT
Petrović, Milan M.
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Definition, implementation, analysis of relevance and development of standards of animal welfare on cattle farms have become very important issues in the late 20th and early 21 century. Today, the most widely accepted definition of welfare is that it is the condition of an animal as a response to its attempts to cope with the effects of the environment. Depending on the type, duration and intensity of action of stimuli and the condition of the animal this struggle can be successfully or unsuccessfully completed in which case the animal welfare is endangered. But how do you assess the welfare as satisfactory and when not? In declaration of welfare as a scientific field, the turning point was the observation of its measurable character or the fact that as a result of the reaction to the effects of the stimulus in the organism of the animal changes occur at the physical, physiological, behavioural and emotional level that can be measured. Traits mentioned belong to output or animal-based ...welfare indicators which have a primary role in the modern methods of assessment. Unlike them, input indicators relate to information resources (resource - based) and applied management (management - based) and are important as additional information in the evaluation. Problems and the importance of selecting indicators in the assessment of the quality of welfare are still present but the practical implementation of a wide variety of assessment methodologies over time should enable better perception, analysis and even synthesis of the most relevant indicators and targets for evaluation of the different methods. This paper presents an overview of the selection, implementation and use of indicators to assess the welfare of dairy cows with a special emphasis on two current methodologies.
Keywords:welfare / quality / dairy cows / indicators / assessment / methods
Source:Proceedings of the 10th International Symposium Modern Trends in Livestock Production, Belgrade, Serbia, October 2-4, 2013, 2013, 66-79
- Institute for Animal Husbandry, Belgrade-Zemun