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Forskningsartikel2008Vetenskapligt granskadÖppen tillgång

Effect of different flooring systems on weight and pressure distribution on claws of dairy cows

Telezhenko, E.; Bergsten, C.; Magnusson, M.; Ventorp, M.; Nilsson, C.


Weight and pressure distribution on the claw were studied in Swedish Holsteins housed in different flooring systems. A total of 127 cows housed in different sections of the experimental barn were used. Each section had different flooring in the walking and standing areas. There were rubber mats or abrasive mastic asphalt flooring on the alleys or a low-abrasive slatted concrete floor. Some sections had feed-stalls equipped with rubber mats; other sections did not. The vertical ground reaction force, contact area, and average contact pressure were determined on the left hind foot using the I-Scan system and analyzed with the F-scan system. These determinations were made in each of the following 3 zones of the claw: bulb, wall, and sole. Most of the weight on claws exposed to concrete floors was carried by the bulb (37.4 +/- 3.5 and 18.3 +/- 2.9% of weight exerted on the foot in the lateral and medial claw, respectively) and the wall zone (20.0 +/- 2.6 and 13.4 +/- 2.4% on lateral and medial claw, respectively). The weight and pressure distribution in cows kept on sections with rubber covered alleys but passing daily over the asphalt floor on their way to the milking parlor did not differ in any zones, except for lateral bulbs, compared with those exposed to slatted concrete alone. Still, the weight bearing of the sole zone in cows kept on rubber mats without access to asphalt was less than that of cows kept on concrete slatted floors (5.1 +/- 0.7 vs. 12.7 +/- 1.1% and 1.1 +/- 0.5 vs. 8.7 +/- 0.7% in lateral and medial claws, respectively). In cows kept on asphalt flooring without feed-stalls, most weight was exerted to the sole zone (36.2 +/- 2.9 and 22.2 +/- 1.8% in lateral and medial claws, respectively). Feed-stalls in combination with asphalt flooring yielded a decreased total contact area (30.1 +/- 1.2 cm(2)) compared with asphalt floors without feed-stalls (35.7 +/- 1.2 cm(2)). The largest total contact area was obtained on the asphalt floor without feed-stalls, resulting in a lower contact pressure (39.8 +/- 2.3 N/cm(2)) than in claws exposed to concrete (66.0 +/- 2.7 N/cm(2)) or rubber mats (56.7 +/- 1.7 N/cm(2)). In conclusion, housing with abrasive floors resulted in claws with increased contact area at the sole surface and therefore, decreased contact pressure, but reduced the weight-bearing role of the strongest part of the claw capsule, the claw wall.


dairy cattle; floor; biomechanics; claw

Publicerad i

Journal of Dairy Science
2008, Volym: 91, nummer: 5, sidor: 1874-1884