IntroductionFailureof function has been classified under 3 Broad categories Inadequacies of Sexual Functioning Inadequacies of Parental Functions Abnormalities of Basic Movements I. Inadequacies of Sexual Functioninga)Silent HeatIncidenceis highest among heifers low in positionin the social hierarchy of the herd and is due to metabolic and social stress Among Dairy cattle 20-30%recorded in variety of countries.
Notuncommon in Mares , Ewes and Sows. But animals have normal level of fertility.Hence can be bred Artificially (Cows) or forcefully bred naturally (Mares). Control:Improved management of breeding animals to minimize the amount of metabolic andsocial stressb) Male impotence More common in Beef breeds –Hereford, Aberdeen Angus breeds. Male animal does not respond to the breedingfemale. In this condition, the bull lays its chin on the hindquarters of thecow and directs little attention to her. Animal maintains an inactive stance,appearance of somnolence created by eyes being partially or periodically closedmost of the time (‘somnolent impotence)Cause – Unknown Condition is refractory totreatment & leads to animal being culled(c )Coital Disorientation Inthis condition, before mating males show positional disorientation such thatits long axis markedly deviated from the female axis and such deviationmaintained throughout reaction time. Mating fails to occur.
In this anomalouscondition, the animal is inactive & behaviourally impotent (d) Intromission Impotence Observed in Bulls . Exists in several dairy breeds ofCattle & Suffolk breed of Sheep. In Bulls, this condition is found inanimals that had normal copulatory function. Rams, this condition found inyoung animals within certain breedlines. Anomaly not of permanent duration,persist for 6 -12 months, becomes resolved spontaneously.
Cause – general social deprivation orspecific deprivation contact with females during development. In this condition, bulls mountsreadily but only partially covers the cow, bulls hind feet not brought forwardclose to cows hindfeet – as a result close genital opposition does not occurRemedy:Avoidance of prolonged isolation rearing & giving animals complete or partial contact with both sexes duringdevelopmentII.Inadequacies of Parental Functions In farming condition Parentalbehaviour in domestic animal species is largely Maternal. Inadequaciesof Maternal behavior is often of great importance to the welfare of theyoung & economics of farming enterprises.(a)Neonatal Rejection Occur on 1st day ofpostpartum & frequently with inexperienced mothers –primiparous. Rejectionis either Desertion or Aggressive (butting, striking, driving away or biting).Desertion of Lambs by Ewes – frequent in fine wooled breeds (22%) e.
g Merino.Also in ewes on low-protein diet – desert her offspring if unable to feed it. Causes :Most cases occur spontaneously, somedue to short term separation from mother at parturition. Desertion of calves –found in isolation reared Heifers. Foal rejection by mares – due todisturbances at the time of foaling either by Stallions or humansREMEDY : Individual Penning, Care of Ewe & lambto assure bonding, Foster rearing, Violent Aggression require sedation (b)Maternal Failure Some animals fail to showadequate Maternal response to their young (not actively desert or aggressivelyreject). i. Fail to groom & clean newborns immediatelyfollowing its birth – neonate left in wet condition – hence mother fails toacquire olfactory & gustatory stimulation which initiate bonding of her progeny.
ii. Reluctance to accommodate the suckling attempts bythe neonatesiii. Another inadequacy is movement whenever youngtries to grasp the teat(c) Stealing of Young Common in Cattle, horses & Sheepwherever large number of pregnant females are enclosed together.
Theintense interest shown by many ewes in alien lambs & cows in alien calves,can be followed by acceptance ofsuckling attempts & young being stolen from its motherProblems – (i) lamb stealing byfoster mother not yet in lactation – may reject her own lambs or have nocolustrum for it – leading to its own lamb death (ii) lamb stealing by ewes thatlost their own lamb – affects maternal behaviour of Deprived ewe if it is her 1stlambing – likely to show anomolous behaviour in next lambingControl: Seperating cow, mare or ewe from the groupbefore or very soon after parturition – (i.e.,) separate calving box orerecting hurdle pen (d)Killing of Young & maternal cannibalismMaternal chewing of their own new borns seen in sows& ewesThereare 3 sub types of behaviour observed in sows (i) Sowis hyperactive following birth of piglets, gets agitated by their activities& vocalisation – piglets become crushed by sows agitation – accidentallykilled piglets get eaten or partially eaten (ii) Sowshows persistent active avoidance – leads to aggression towards approachingpiglets – such piglets likely to be bitten & killed – killed piglets geteaten or partially eaten(iii) Sowis hyperactive following parturition – shows aggression towards humans orpiglets coming within range – snaps aggressively at any intruding piglets –leads to death of whole litter – killed piglets get eaten or partiallyeatenCausesofCannibalism in sows – Husbandryconditions – sows placed in a novel environment at the time of parturition –leads to environmental maladjustment – leading to cannibalismRemedy – Providing Farrowing crate , Andallowing few days to get adjusted, Supply of straw to pre –partum sows – allowsthem to engage in nest building.
In extreme cases Sedation may be used Maternal Cannibalism in Ewes Chews on New borns appendages – such ewes eat off tail / feet of new born lambs which may leadto severly damaged feet & in addition tail become seriously infected leading to lamb to be destroyed. Occur whereewes lamb in crowded indoor condition.Controlin Ewes – (i) Adequate provision of lambing pens & Outdoor Space (ii) Seperation from other animalsto minimise excitability (iii) provide well balanced rationto lambing ewes as it creates suspicion about nutritional factors because ofthis abnormal appetite III. Abnormalities of Basic Movements1.Abnormal lying & Standing – CATTLE – in hooved animals kept on slipperyslatted floors – Delay or prolonged lying 2.Abnormal lying of young cattle in Slippery floor to minimise painful events – Liedown rump first 3.
DogSitting observed – in Veal calves permanently confined in narrow cratesControlof this abnormal Behaviour : Avoiding Slippery Slatted Floors and exercise onadequate flooring & suitable lying conditions Hence in general, Abnormal behaviour due to failure ofFunctions are Innate to certain extent i.e., specific to breedswhich cannot be corrected fully.
Certain Failure of Functions are due to FaultyManagement and can be reduced by improving Farm management References 1. Farm Animal Behavior andWelfare by A.F.Fraser and D.
M.Broom 19972. Domestic Animal Behaviourfor veterinarians and Animal Scientists by Katherine A.Houpt 2011 Animal behaviour by David Mc Farland (1999)