Pages: 165-170 Published: 1 Jun 2014
Views: 2,884 Downloads: 1,725
Abstract: Sheep are subjected to a multitude of psychological and environmental stressors that cause decreased productivity, increased disease and hence to poorer welfare. The weaning is one of the most stressful procedures for all lambs not only in terms of the dam-lamb relationship, but also because of its potential effect on the health of lamb. In numerous studies have been discussed the effects of different weaning strategies, along with physiological and behavioural responses to weaning stress of lambs. However, there does not seem to be a consensus on the strategy that completely eliminates weaning stress. Sheep producers should know weaning strategies which minimize negative stress caused by nutritional, environmental, physical and social changes experienced by lambs at weaning time. The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the literature examining what is known about the importance and impact of weaning stress in lambs.