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Research article2013Peer reviewed

Occupational Health and Safety Aspects of Animal Handling in Dairy Production

Lindahl, Cecilia; Lundqvist, Peter; Hagevoort, G. Robert; Lunner Kolstrup, Christina; Douphrate, David; Pinzke, Stefan; Grandin, Temple

Abstract

Livestock handling in dairy production is associated with a number of health and safety issues. A large number of fatal and nonfatal injuries still occur when handling livestock. The many animal handling tasks on a dairy farm include moving cattle between different locations, vaccination, administration of medication, hoof care, artificial insemination, ear tagging, milking, and loading onto trucks. There are particular problems with bulls, which continue to cause considerable numbers of injuries and fatalities in dairy production. In order to reduce the number of injuries during animal handling on dairy farms, it is important to understand the key factors in human-animal interactions. These include handler attitudes and behavior, animal behavior, and fear in cows. Care when in close proximity to the animal is the key for safe handling, including knowledge of the flight zone, and use of the right types of tools and suitable restraint equipment. Thus, in order to create safe working conditions during livestock handling, it is important to provide handlers with adequate training and to establish sound safety management procedures on the farm.

Keywords

Agriculture; animal handling; cattle; cows; occupational injury

Published in

Journal of Agromedicine
2013, Volume: 18, number: 3, pages: 274-283 Publisher: TAYLOR & FRANCIS INC