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Reactions of young dairy calves and of young suckler calves from the mother cow herd exposed to transport stress: Effects of age of the animals and of the rearing conditions



Reactions of young dairy calves and of young suckler calves from the mother cow herd exposed to transport stress: Effects of age of the animals and of the rearing conditions



DTW (Deutsche Tieraerztliche Wochenschrift) 105(1): 17-24



Single box reared dairy calves (TK) and suckler calves (SK) from a mother cow herd were exposed to uniformly performed short-haul road transports. Long lasting measurements by way of heart rate recording, body temperature, body weight and blood sampling before and just after finishing transport and in the morning of next day as well were used assessing the strain and adaptation of calves of 3 to 7 days, of 8 to 15 days and of more than 15 days of postnatal age. Blood samples were analyzed for acid base balance, gas content, haemoglobin derivatives and haemoglobin variants, protein, metabolites, minerals and cortisol. Different mean values between age groups and sampling points could be found for heart rate, body temperature, PCO2, BE, HCO3, total protein, creatinine, blood urea, glucose, lactate, cortisol, methaemoglobin, Mg, Ca, P. In suckler calves heart rate, body temperature, total protein, P and fraction of MetHb were higher and creatinine, lactate and cortisol were lower than in dairy calves. Different means between sampling points existed for heart rate, cortisol, body temperature except SK >15 days, lactate except SK 815 days and glucose except TK 3-7 and TK 8-15 days. Results show relative intensity and degree of strain imposed to young calves in case of transport, the preferentially affected variables and the importance of time factors (age of animals, infradian rhythmicity, relationship between the start of a reaction and concentration changes in body fluids) for the change of physiological variables of young animals exposed to transport.

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Accession: 009302715

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