Physiological responses to preslaughter transportation stress in Tasco-supplemented Boer goats

Author: S. Galipalli, K.M. Gadiyaram, B. Kouakou, T.H. Terrill and G. Kannan
Year: 2004
Issue: 5
Volume: 34
Page: 198 - 200

Tasco seaweed (Ascophyllum nodosum) supplementation is known to increase antioxidant activity and immune response in farm animals, but its effects have not been adequately studied in goats. This study was conducted to determine the effects of Tasco feed supplementation on stress responses in transported goats. Mature uncastrated Boer goats were fed a lucerne pellet diet and a Tasco supplement either with (Treatment) or without (Control) seaweed extract (2% of daily intake) for eight weeks (n = 16/treatment group). The animals were transported 6 h to impose stress, held in pens overnight without feed and slaughtered on two different days. Blood samples were collected via jugular venipuncture, before (0 h) and after transportation (6 h) and after overnight holding (24 h) to assess stress responses. Dietary treatment did not influence plasma cortisol, glucose concentrations and creatine kinase (CK) activity. Plasma cortisol and glucose increased due to transportation, but decreased significantly after holding. Plasma CK activities increased during transportation and holding, and peaked significantly at 24-h sampling. Transportation increased neutrophil counts and decreased lymphocyte counts significantly, but did not affect eosinophil and monocyte counts. Tasco feed supplementation did not have any effect on the physiological responses to transportation stress in goats. Transportation stress may have negative effects on immune function in goats.

Keywords: goats, Stress, transportation
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