Show simple item record

dc.contributor.authorMatson, Kimberly Monicaen_US
dc.date.accessioned2014-03-14T20:38:27Z
dc.date.available2014-03-14T20:38:27Z
dc.date.issued2004-05-12en_US
dc.identifier.otheretd-05242006-113109en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10919/33186
dc.description.abstractThe objectives of this study were to determine the effects of handling peri-puberal heifers for 2 h each week on in-chute behavior, isolation behavior, and the time required for each heifer to leave the testing area; and to determine if the location of the facial hair whorl was associated with any of the behavior scores or social dominance order. Crossbred beef heifers (n = 146) were assigned to be walked through, sorted and moved through a chute for 2 hr each wk for 20 wk (HANDLED) or allowed to remain on pasture unless handling was required to treat an injury or disease (CONTROL). In-chute behavior, isolation behavior and exit times were observed and scored at the beginning (0 wk), middle (10 wk) and end of the experiment (20 wk). The facial hair whorl on each heifer was classified as being high (above the eyes), middle (between the eyes), or low (below the eyes). At the end of the experiment pairs of heifers in the HANDLED group competed for a feed source and a social dominance order was estimated. Weekly handling decreased in-chute behavior scores of heifers with facial hair whorl positions classified as medium or low, but not in heifers that exhibited a hair whorl high on their face. Cattle in the HANDLED treatment group which had an initial isolation score of 2 or 3 had the greatest improvement in temperament over the entire experiment when compared to CONTROL animals with the same initial isolation score. The calmest heifers were not negatively affected by the handling, while the most agitated animals in the HANDLED had a similar overall change in isolation score as those animals in the CONTROL group. This indicates that while weekly handling improved the temperament and behavior of heifers with intermediate temperament rating at the outset of the experiment, weekly handling seemed unnecessary for the calmest heifers and did not have a beneficial effect on the heifers rated as the most nervous and agitated at the beginning of the experiment. Social dominance rankings were positively correlated (P < 0.10) with final in-chute behavior scores, but not with the other behavior scores or heifer body weight. Cattle with the hair whorls in the middle of the forehead had higher mean social dominant rank than those with hair whorls higher or lower on the face (P < 0.03). Overall, the results of this experiment indicate that behavior testing can reveal differences in the temperament of heifers and that, other than the most nervous and agitated heifers; repeated handling could serve to improve the temperament of the animals.en_US
dc.publisherVirginia Techen_US
dc.relation.haspartMatsonThesis063.pdfen_US
dc.rightsI hereby certify that, if appropriate, I have obtained and attached hereto a written permission statement from the owner(s) of each third party copyrighted matter to be included in my thesis, dissertation, or project report, allowing distribution as specified below. I certify that the version I submitted is the same as that approved by my advisory committee. I hereby grant to Virginia Tech or its agents the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible, under the conditions specified below, my thesis, dissertation, or project report in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. I retain all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis, dissertation or project report. I also retain the right to use in future works (such as articles or books) all or part of this thesis, dissertation, or project report.en_US
dc.subjectfacial hair whorlen_US
dc.subjectbehavioren_US
dc.subjecttemperamenten_US
dc.subjectbeef heiferen_US
dc.subjectsocial dominanceen_US
dc.titleThe effect of weekly handling on the temperament of peri-puberal crossbred beef heifersen_US
dc.typeThesisen_US
dc.contributor.departmentAnimal and Poultry Sciencesen_US
dc.description.degreeMaster of Scienceen_US
thesis.degree.nameMaster of Scienceen_US
thesis.degree.levelmastersen_US
thesis.degree.grantorVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State Universityen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineAnimal and Poultry Sciencesen_US
dc.contributor.committeechairBeal, Wilfred E.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberHall, John B.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberBarnes, Michael A.en_US
dc.identifier.sourceurlhttp://scholar.lib.vt.edu/theses/available/etd-05242006-113109/en_US
dc.date.sdate2006-05-24en_US
dc.date.rdate2007-02-02
dc.date.adate2007-02-02en_US


Files in this item

Thumbnail

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record