Animal Welfare and Disease Control
The goal of this section is to conduct research related to veterinary science within the fields of bioethics, animal behaviour and epidemiology. The research focuses on identifying and describing patterns, associations and relationships, and using this knowledge to improve animal welfare, sustainability and profitability within animal production.
The subjects of animal welfare, prudent use of antibiotics, sustainable production systems and profitability for farmers are the core of the research in this group. This creates value for society in general because it develops and evaluates novel ways of optimizing animal welfare and profitability at both the farm and national level, including prioritising the prudent use of antibiotics.
Studies in animal behaviour and bioethics provide a foundation of basic knowledge, to create a better understanding of the interaction between people and animals.
Studies of disease spread and the effectiveness of control measures help farmers, vets and other people in the field to reduce spread of diseases. Moreover, all of the mentioned disciplines are combined in the One Health approach, improving the sustainability of co-existence for humans and animals at the same time.
Quote from head of section Hans Houe:
”We utilize knowledge from all biological and societal levels in an interdiciplinary and integrative approach. This way we address important research questions that simultaneously have relevance for many stakeholders.”
- Book on evaluation of One Health initiatives: https://www.wageningenacademic.com/doi/book/10.3920/978-90-8686-875-9. One Health combines the disciplines of animal and human health and ecosystems. This is a handbook that provides an overview of concepts and processes as well as guidance on how to implement the One Health approach.
- Lahrmann, H. P., Hansen, C. F., D’Eath, R., Busch, M. E., & Forkman, B. (2018). Tail posture predicts tail biting outbreaks at pen level in weaner pigs. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 200, 29–35. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.applanim.2017.12.006. This study shows that lowered tail postures in pigs can be utilized to predict tail biting outbreaks at pen level.
- Sandøe, P., Corr, S. A., Lund, T. B., & Forkman, B. (2019). Aggregating animal welfare indicators – Can it be done in a transparent and ethically robust way. Animal Welfare 28(1): 67-76. Serious challenges arise within the process of creating an index for animal welfare. In this study, we focus on the ethical aspects of this problem and discuss the different ways to proceed.
Head of unit: Professor Hans Houe
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