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Uses of animals and their health problems

Uses of animals

  • We keep animals to provide us with
    • wool and hair for clothing, ropes and tents
    • hides and skin for leather.
    • meat, milk, eggs
    • bones, hooves and horn for a variety of uses.
  • Some animals are used for transport, ploughing and work.
  • We always benefit from the animals we keep.

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Different breeds of animal

    • Throughout the world man keeps animals which are suited to the local environment.
    • Feed, water and climate are the main factors which determine what animals are in any one region. As a result of this we find a large variety of animal breeds throughout the world.
    • In cooler parts of the world, sheep have thick woolly fleeces to protect them against cold winters. In hotter parts, where the climate is very hot, the sheep have light, hairy coats.

Sheep (English - Somali)

sheep
    • Friesian cows produce a lot of milk on the good grasslands in countries with cool weather conditions. In India, the Sahiwal cattle are good milk producers in the hot tropics.
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Cows
  • In China pigs are fed on food which is mainly roughage and so developed a pot-belly to use this type of food. In Europe pigs are fed a lot of grain and have leaner bodies.
  • Livestock in a community has developed over a long time. They are accustomed to that environment.
  • Sometimes people want to introduce new breeds to an area. This must be carefully considered and advice taken from knowledgeable persons as the new breeds may not be suited to the new environment.
  • We should not keep animals which are old or barren as they will eat the feed that could be better used for young animals.

Problems of overstocking (too many animals)

  • You should consider the number of animals kept in your community. There should be enough feed and water available for them all year.
  • Controlling and planning livestock numbers and the availability of good feed and water is basic to primary animal health care
  • If we do not keep the numbers of livestock in relation to available feed and water, then:
    • Animals lose weight, become sick and disease spreads.
    • Animals do not breed well and death of young occurs.
    • Overgrazing and loss of pasture, bushes and trees occur.
    • Loss of vegetation will result in erosion of soil and loss of good land.

Health issues of animals

Some of the health problems you may discover are:

  • Animals die suddenly.
  • Young animals are born sick or dead.
  • Leg and foot problems.
  • Skin troubles.
  • Animals do not increase in weight.
  • Livestock suffer from worms, ticks or lice.
  • The udders of milk animals become swollen and blood is found in the milk.
  • Chickens stop laying eggs or die suddenly.

You must keep good contacts with your nearest veterinarian and livestock specialist. Remember that these people are there to help you. Keep an animal health record.

Source : Pashu sakhi Handbook



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