N&H TOP LINE: Researchers look for welfare cues

By trying to better understand animal behavior cues, animal handling tips can be developed that minimize stress and maximize well-being.

It’s easy to tell when friends and family are ecstatic or upset. People are human-centric, and hardwired to pick up the physical cues and social signals that indicate relaxed or stressed states.

However, animals have their own world of signals that are hard for us to pick up on. Not only that, they have a life-or-death interest in hiding their true physical state from predators further up the food chain, including people.

“The thing about cows and sheep is that as plains-liv

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