Is pain relief just another pain for graziers and are horns a pain?

The benefits of pain relief for painful procedures such as castration, dehorning and disbudding are widely acknowledged and supported by field trials. Aside from the obvious welfare benefits, production is enhanced as animals suffer less pain, and as a result return to normal feeding and other activities in a much faster time than without any pain relief.

Beef producers should be mindful of the term ‘fit to load’. Animal Biosecurity and Welfare inspectors are continuing to receive animal welfare complaints due to cattle arriving at sales and abattoirs where they are clearly not ‘fit to load’ – this covers animals in pain and suffering welfare conditions (including ingrown horns).

These practices place the beef industry at risk of a bad public perception in relation to animal husbandry and stock management.

By watching the full recordings of this webinar you will hear from two very experienced presenters:

• Dr Libby Harriman (Great Artesian Vets) discusses the impact of pain on grazing animals and the relative benefits for graziers that employ pain relief practices as part of their husbandry (21:46; published 1 December 2020 by FutureBeefAu)

• Glen Sibson (Biosecurity Queensland) discusses in-grown horns and ‘fit to load’ – including the roles and responsibilities of consignors and transporters of livestock (22:06; published 1 December 2020 by FutureBeefAu)

You can use the tabs below to select and watch a full recording or use the playlists (below each recording) to jump to the start of a particular section within the recording.

Download a copy of the presentations:

Additional resources:
Pain relief medication for beef cattle (FutureBeef)
Guide to the correct use of pain relief in the grass-fed beef cattle sector (Cattle Council of Australia)
Pastoralist trials pain relief (FutureBeef)
Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for Cattle (Animal Health Australia)
Fit to load guide – and download a copy (Meat & Livestock Australia)