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Veterinaria México

Print version ISSN 0301-5092


BECERRIL-HERRERA, Marcelino et al. Relevant aspects of swine welfare in transit. Vet. Méx [online]. 2009, vol.40, n.3, pp.315-329. ISSN 0301-5092.

Current globalization policies demand animal welfare standards on animal transportation. In spite of international tendencies to commercialize meat cuts while decreasing live animal transit, transport is still one of the major problems in terms of animal welfare, besides carcass and meat by-products' quality. The present review analyzes, in general terms, the different definitions on animal welfare and factors affecting pig welfare in transit. Several case studies are referred to as examples, showing the animal response to stress during transport and its effects on both meat quality and the economic impact. In addition, legal requirements and Mexican regulations for pig transportation are also described. Information in regard to swine stress and welfare in transit, considers a number of factors that alter the animal metabolic homeostasis with subsequent negative effects on pork quality. It is conclude that knowledge on basic animal behavioral and physiological needs during transport, as well as a suitable training of personnel, are necessary for reducing animal welfare problems. Last but not least, some recommendations on handling practices are given in order to improve swine welfare during transit.

Keywords : Swine; Transport; Animal Welfare; Mexican Legislation; Load Density; Meat Quality.

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