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Locomotor disorders in veterinary practice.

Today's dairy animals are exposed to several environmental and managemental challenges, which are different from the past. Intensive dairy farming, confinement to concrete structure, constant exposure to corrosive conditions, conformation defects, nutrition concerns and perhaps even increased body size are some of the risk factors that increase the probability of locomotor disorders.

Despite increased awareness of these factors, high levels of lameness in dairy herds persists and continue to be one of the largest financial drains to the dairy industry. Locomotor disorders are the third most important health problem after infertility and mastitis affecting dairy production. Worldwide research indicates that more than 60% of herd animals become lame at least once a year. Lameness is associated with pain, discomfort and decrease in milk yield. Furthermore, lameness that begins during the first 30 days of lactation hampers reproductive performance. Thus preventing lameness and minimizing locomotor disorders have upbeat impact on production and sub-fertility.

In fact, animals require at least 3-4 km of walk daily for staying in good physical shape while our confined housing system impede movements. Further the close proximity to human population and urbanization increases the incidence of automobile accidents, traumatic injuries and fractures in both domestic and wild animals.

Preventive and prophylactic care of the farm animals with a proper loose housed herds and effective farm management practices is the only key to minimising locomotor disorders in farm animals.

Dr. Nitin Bhatia

Chief Editor

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Author:Bhatia, Nitin
Publication:Intas Polivet
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Jul 1, 2012
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