The cattle welfare has different influencing factors, such as temperature, humidity, the facilities in which the cattle are kept, nutrition and even the medicine applied in each case, and how do we know if the influence is positive or negative?
Quite simply, by analysing the behaviour of the animals in each case.
This is quoted in the study: “Behaviour of Holstein cows kept in a free stall system, in winter, in an arid zone, Mexico” published by Vitela, I., among other authors in 2005.
In this case, the behaviour of dairy cows was evaluated, and it was concluded that cows spend a considerable part of their time only scratching each other, being one of the 5 most common interactions between them, and that in these facilities they scratched against each other.
But it is not only sheep that spend time scratching. As analysed in the study by Fernández Beltrán, Hypersensitivity to insect bites in horses published by the University of Zaragoza, horses frequently present various clinical pictures associated with one or more types of hypersensitivity.
Of these, the most common is caused by the bite or sting of insects, being the trigger of a disease that consists of the alteration of the immune balance of the animals, and is caused by allergenic components contained in the salivary gland of these insects.
The disease is characterised by itching and skin conditions resulting from scratching.
It is a seasonal disease (spring-summer). A wide range of treatment options are proposed, but with varying results. Seventeen surveys of horse owners with clinically diagnosed insect hypersensitivity in the Seville region concluded that horses living in stables were more likely to have tail lesions and less likely to have hypopigmentation than horses living in fields and/or paddocks.
The higher incidence of tail lesions in stabled animals may be due to the fact that the animals are more likely to scratch against objects and/or walls and cause self-harm.
It is because of these studies that at Sacema Brushes we have adapted our Animal Comfort totem to horses as well, with different heights and thicknesses of the brush filament that forms our cattle scratcher and which is dermatologically adapted to each specific need, thus guaranteeing the well-being of the cattle.
Fernández Beltrán, M., Fernández Casasnovas, A., & Marteles Aragüés, D. Hypersensitivity to insect bites in horses: a survey study of owners. University of Zaragoza, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, 2016. Department of Animal Pathology, Area of Animal Medicine and Surgery.
Vitela, I., Cruz-Vázquez, C., & Solano, J. (2005). Behaviour of Holstein cows kept in a free stall system, in winter, in an arid zone, Mexico. Archives of Veterinary Medicine, 37(1), 23-27.