Research Reports

Research Reports are designed to report applied aspects of research from the UBC’s Dairy Education and Research Centre recently published in refereed international scientific journals. Reports are two pages in length and are published three to five times per year. If you would like to receive Research Reports as they are released please send a note and your e-mail address to either Lesley Dampier ( or Jim Thompson (

Cows are highly motivated to access a brush

Grooming behavior is expressed by many animals, including cows, and helps them maintain a healthy coat and skin. Cows can groom themselves and herd mates by licking. When housed in naturalistic environments, they also use trees or other structures to scratch parts of their body that are otherwise difficult to reach.

Use and perceptions of on-farm emergency slaughter for dairy cows in British Columbia

When farm animals become injured, farmers must decide whether to treat, transport, euthanize, or use on-farm emergency slaughter (OFES). OFES is one end-of-life option for animals that cannot be transported humanely but are fit for human consumption.

Public Expectations of a Dairy Farm

To provide some insight into understanding the public’s views of animal agriculture, we conducted two studies, one asked participants how they would describe the ideal dairy farm and the second where participants were surveyed before and after touring a dairy farm.

Cow Comfort at Calving (Vol. 15-1)

Cow Comfort at Calving (Vol. 15-1)

Anyone who works in the dairy industry will be aware that there is tremendous variation in maternity pen design. Part of the reason for this variability is a lack of research on what types of environments are best for the cow while she is giving birth. Research at UBC has now recruited the cows’ help […]

Preventing hock injuries (Vol 13-3)

Preventing hock injuries (Vol 13-3)

Housing systems that cause disease or injuries to animals are clearly undesirable. Injury and disease compromise dairy cow welfare and can reduce longevity and production. Lameness, mastitis and transition cow diseases are now widely recognized as serious animal welfare and production issues in the dairy industry. Skin injuries on dairy cows should raise similar concerns […]

Why cattle graze the bunk: effects of variation in TMR quality on feeding behaviour

Why this matters… A total mixed ration (TMR) should provide a nutritionally balanced diet with all nutrients that cattle need to grow and function well. However, on farms the quality of the TMR may vary between days (in relation to inputs and mixing), within days (due to sorting by cows or environmental exposure), and along the feed bunk (due […]

Lameness: A Transition Cow Disease

Lameness is the number one animal welfare issue facing the North American dairy industry. Lameness is painful, and cases can last from weeks to months. Severe cases that do not improve can result in the cow being culled from the herd. Cows experiencing pain are less likely to show signs of estrus, such as mounting […]

What Cows Prefer: Pasture and Access to the Barn

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Overstocking: at the stall and the feed bunk

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Feeding behaviour and early detection of diseases

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Feed sorting: effects of feed composition and management

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a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

Faculty of Land and Food Systems
2357 Main Mall,
Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z4, Canada
Tel: 604-822-1219
Dean: Rickey Yada
UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre
6947 #7 Lougheed Highway
Box #202,
Agassiz, BC, V0M 1A0, Canada
Tel: 1-604-796-8410
Fax: 1-604-796-8413
Director: Jim Thompson
Manager: Nelson Dinn

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