State of the art of cattle dehorning in the EU Member States. A quantitative survey of the current practices

G. Cozzi, F. Gottardo, M. Brscic, B. Contiero, N. Irrgang, U. Knierim, O. Pentelescu, J.J. Windig, L. Mirabito, F. Kling Eveillard, A.C. Dockes, I. Veissier, A. Velarde, C. Fuentes, A. Dalmau, C. Winckler

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46 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A survey was carried out to describe the extent and current practice of cattle disbudding/dehorning in the EU Member States. Disbudding was defined as removal of horns in calves of up to 2 months of age, whereas dehorning was defined as removal of horns in older animals. Specific questionnaires were created regarding dairy, beef, and suckler production systems and they were submitted to local experts of each country belonging to relevant institutions like universities, national farmers' associations, cattle breeders associations, farm veterinarians and practitioners. Figures on disbudding/dehorning practices were produced for each production system for both the whole European Union and the North, Centre, East and South EU macro-regions. A total of 652 questionnaires were collected and 64%, 24% and 12% of them related to dairy cattle, beef cattle and suckler cows, respectively. Data from the survey showed that in Europe, 81% of the dairy, 47% of the beef and 68% of the suckler currently keep disbudded/dehorned animals, while the prevalence of polled cattle is rather low, especially in the dairy cattle sector (5% of all cattle farms;
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4-11
JournalLivestock Science
Volume179
Issue numbersp.issue
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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