Technical Staffs’ Knowledge and Attitudes Survey Regarding Tail Docking on Dairy Farms of Turkey

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Sinmez Ç. Ç. , Ülger İ. , Aslım G., Yiğit A., Kaliber M.

Turkish Journal Of Veterinary & Animal Sciences, vol.45, no.4, pp.746-755, 2021 (Journal Indexed in SCI Expanded)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 45 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.3906/vet-2103-78
  • Title of Journal : Turkish Journal Of Veterinary & Animal Sciences
  • Page Numbers: pp.746-755


The study examined the knowledge, beliefs, and attitudinal drivers of technical staff and breeders regarding tail docking and the incidence of docking on large-scale dairy farms  (≥100 cattle) in Turkey. Survey responses were analyzed using the Mann-Whitney-U test  to determine attitudinal differences between respondents who self-reported docking tails 8 or not docking their cattle. Using face-to-face interviews of 210 respondents at 206  Turkish dairy farms was carried out. Tail docking procedures were practiced on 27.1% of  the surveyed farms. At the time of the tail docking, 57.9% of cattle were less than  11 months of age. The most frequent tail docking method was amputation by rubber ring  constriction (61.4%), with the following most common method being a surgical one  (33.3%). The most preferred location for the tail docking was between the sixth and  seventh coccygeal vertebrae (29.8%), followed by level with mid udder (26.3%). The  most common reasons given by respondents for docking tails were to increase hygiene  (64.8%), the comfort of the workers (62.4%), and reduce the risk of mastitis (60.9%). The  survey results of the present study indicated that, without clear regulations or laws, the  tail docking of dairy cattle varies substantially with personal preference rather than scientific justification in Turkey. Technical staff and breeders should be educated and  been aware of humane alternative methods (switch trimming) for tail docking in dairy  cattle, and societal pressure and public perceptions considered about tail docking on  Turkish dairy farms.