Take care of livestock during extreme heat

Take care of livestock during extreme heat

Weather
RISING TEMPS: Take extra care of animals with extreme temperatures forecast today.

RISING TEMPS: Take extra care of animals with extreme temperatures forecast today.

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Animal owners are being reminded to take appropriate precautions

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Animal owners are being reminded to take appropriate precautions to ensure they are properly cared for during the extreme temperatures forecast.

Chief Veterinary Officer Mary Carr said there were a number of actions animal owners could take to reduce the adverse impact extreme heat could have on animal health and wellbeing.

"Where possible make sure there is enough shade for your animals to seek shelter and protection from the blazing sun, with plenty of water supplied nearby," Dr Carr said.

"During high temperatures animals can drink up to double their normal intake so it’s important they have access to sufficient cool water.”

Dr Carr said animals should, where possible, be kept away from dams, which could become boggy and a danger for any stock seeking water.

“Large and clean drinking troughs should be used, as evaporation may make trough water become saline and undrinkable,” she said.

“In hot weather troughs should be inspected daily to make sure they are working properly.

“Burying feeder pipes will help control water temperature and prevent breakages.”

Dr Carr said during extreme temperatures animals should be checked regularly to make sure they are coping with the heat.

"Livestock owners should check on animals daily for signs of heat stress such as sweating, panting, and drooling,” she said.

“Stock may also be restless and start bellowing."

"Transport of animals both on and off the farm should be minimised during periods of extreme heat.

“If stock movement is absolutely necessary, then it should only be done during the night or early morning when temperatures are normally lower.

"Livestock transporters should also have contingency plans in case of an unexpected breakdown, as per national guidelines for the movement of livestock.”

Dr Carr said pet owners should also make sure animals have enough shade and water and consider keeping pets inside on hot days.

“Ice packs and wet towels can used to help cool them down,” she said.

  • Details: For more information and advice on animal care during heatwave periods visit pir.sa.gov.au/emergency_management/caring_for_livestock_during_a_heatwave.
  • More details about the national welfare laws governing the movement of livestock can be found at animalwelfarestandards.net.au/land-transport
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