A new measure related to rest has been added to the array of variables already recorded- namely lying time, number of lying bouts, and average duration of lying bouts. A dairy cow spends 12-14 hours/day resting, which makes it critical to provide adequate housing and space to ensure positive well-being. While it is key for a cow to be able to rest, there may also be some importance to what posture she is in while resting. It has been speculated that a cow’s ability to rest in certain postures has an effect on her comfort and welfare. Therefore, a portion of this project will also concentrate on what resting postures a cow assumes based on the stall width she is provided with. We predict cows provided with a wider stall will utilize this extra space by spending more time resting and assuming more relaxed resting postures. These results will allow us to provide recommendations to producers on tie-stall width and which cows may need to be provided with more space (i.e. special needs cows, older cows, etc.). By understanding how the tie-stall impacts the cow, we can improve her ease of movement in the short term and improve housing, production and health in the long term.
|Cow resting in a single width stall|