The American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP) has introduced newly created beef and dairy lameness guidelines for its members and the livestock industry.
"Lameness in Dairy & Beef Herds" offers information veterinarians and their clients can use to identify, mitigate and prevent lameness in cattle.
"AABP recognizes that lameness in cattle not only effects growth and performance, but also is a visible welfare issue that can lead to additional concern and scrutiny," said Dr. Richard Wiley, chair of the AABP task force on lameness.
The guidelines look at aspects such as time standing, flooring, housing, environment, nutrition and heat stress, along with recordkeeping and review of lameness incidence and protocols. The guidelines encourage a communicative approach between veterinarians, the herd nutritionist, hoof trimmers, farm caregivers and management to facilitate action to reduce lameness risk, AABP said.
"Veterinarians are encouraged to take these guidelines to their clients and become leaders in the discussion of lameness issues," Wiley added.
The AABP lameness guidelines, as well as other AABP guidelines, can be found at http://aabp.org/about/AABP_Guidelines.asp. Additional resources, calculators and worksheets on cattle lameness can be found on the public section of the AABP website at http://aabp.org/members/Lameness.asp. AABP members can also find additional reference material in the members-only section of that same webpage by first logging in with their AABP member number/User ID and password.