The influence of different claw trimming methods on plasma cortisol revels in dairy cows

By Möstl, E. and Sixt, A. and Stanek, C., Wiener Tierarztliche Monatsschrift, 1997
Research Paper Web Link / URL:
The influence of two different methods of claw trimming was evaluated in a herd of 51 dairy cows of Fleckvieh and Braunvieh breed, with an average age of 4.9 years. The conventional farriers method with the cow standing in a stock was compared to the mechanic method using an angled grinding machine, with the cow kept in lying position using a tilted table. A behaviour score was applied and the cortisol level was evaluated in blood serum using an enzyme-immunoassay. The pretrimming basic blood level was median 1.4 ng/ml, increasing significantly to a median value of 37.4 ng/ml at the end of the trimming procedure, The cortisol values were still significantly higher after 24 hours, returning to the preliminary values thereafter. The highest behaviour scale values were obtained during the fixation of the animals in the stock, whilst the highest cortisol levels were obtained at the end of the claw trimming procedure. No difference of cortisol levels were demonstrable between the two methods of claw trimming, also the degree of horn overgrowth had no influence on cortisol levels
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