Caring for animals during extreme heat

Heat wave conditions can have an effect on livestock welfare and their performance. Feed consumption and hence weight gains will be reduced and in extreme cases animals can suffer heat stress and die. Cattle in a feedlot are particularly at risk. To minimise the impact of heat stress:

  • Ensure adequate shelter

  • Provide a good source of water that is not too hot. Stock will reduce water intake once it gets above 26 degrees Celsius and will stop drinking if the temperature of the water rises above 36 degrees Celsius

  • Avoid all unnecessary handling or transportation. If handling or transportation is necessary plan to do it at a time in the day when the temperature is lower.

Joining can be impacted during heat waves therefore scanning for early detection of a problem is valuable.

Further information is available on the Agriculture Victoria webpage

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