Externally funded project

Stress reduction in dairy cows


Project Details
Project duration: 20122013


Abstract
Successful organic milk production requires healthy cows. Stress is an important factor influencing dairy health, especially udder health. Only relaxed cows that feel well during milking in the parlour will fully eject the milk and stay healthy in the long-term. Furthermore, fearful cows during milking hamper the milking procedures and increase the milking time for the farmer. Due to increasing dairy herd sizes and rising economic pressure on the dairy farmers, the human-animal relationship on the farms often becomes less intensive. Therefore especially first-calf heifers often show restlessness and distress during milking. This is neither comfortable for the cow nor for the farmer. The aim of the project is to develop and test a handling method for stress reduction during milking. The cow handling will be based on the method "TTouch" according to Tellington. The project will be conducted in collaboration with 2-4 farms. The behavior (e.g. kicking, stepping) and milk yield of the investigated cows will be observed before and after treatment with the handling method and compared with control cows. Additionally, udder health development will be monitored over a period of at least 3 month. The results of this pilot study will be published in the agricultural press. The project results shall support farmers in their aim to create a positive milking atmosphere and to improve udder health of their dairy herds.
Funding: Naturkost ElkershausenGmbH and Naturkost Erfurt GmbH


Publications

2015
2014
2013

Last updated on 2018-20-08 at 17:59