Physiology and disease

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During transportation animals are exposed simultaneously to a variety of stressors. Stress may have a negative effect on the immune system and this may result in increased susceptibility to infection and increased infectiousness. The intensity of the stress response during transport can be measured using a combination of physiological and behavioural measures. Transport augments the intensity and frequency of contacts between animals and this may result in diseases being spread. Some of the diseases that may be spread due to transport are very infectious and economically damaging and are of considerable importance in their effect on the welfare of animals. Transport may also result in tissue damage and malfunction in transported animals. Some of the strategies that may help reduce the effects of transport on disease susceptibility and spread are inspection of the animals that are to be transported so that only fi t and healthy animals are transported, improvement of transport conditions and reduction of contact between transported and non-transported animals. However, these measures cannot completely prevent the negative effects of transport on disease susceptibility and spread. Clearly one of the main strategies to mitigate disease spread is to minimize the distances live animals are transported. © WSPA 2008.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLong Distance Transport and Welfare of Farm Animals
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 28 Mar 2008


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