alexa Urination and defecation by group-housed dairy calves

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Urination and defecation by group-housed dairy calves

A better understanding of when and where group-housed calves are most likely to defecate or urinate might permit improved housing design or more efficient use of cleaning routines. However, this is the first study to address the urination and defecation habits of calves. The primary aims of this study were to report the daily frequency of calves’ urination and defecation and determine when and where group-housed dairy calves defecate and urinate most frequently. We were also interested to see if incidence of urination and defecation changed with increasing age and the change in diet at weaning. We observed 36 female Holstein calves, housed in groups of 9, and fed milk, grain, and hay from automated feeders. For the purposes of another experiment, these calves were assigned to 1 of 3 experimental treatments relating to age at start of weaning and milk allowance: low milk allowance and early weaning (6 L/d, 42 d), high milk allowance and early weaning (12 L/d, 42 d), and high milk allowance and late weaning (12 L/d, 84 d) The occurrence of defecations and urinations was determined by continuous observation of video recordings taken over 72 h at 2 age periods (age, mean ± SD; period 1 = 32.0 ± 11.13 d and period 2 = 61 ± 11.29 d).

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