Industry Body Opposes Dairy Cow Tail Docking

US - The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) has approved a resolution to oppose tail docking of dairy cows in their industry guidelines, the Dairy FARM programme, asking for the practice to be phased out over the next 10 years.
calendar icon 7 August 2012
clock icon 1 minute read

This decision aligns their FARM programme with the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and the American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP).

The following language has been approved: "NMPF’s National Dairy FARM Animal Care Programme opposes the routine tail docking of dairy animals, except in the case of traumatic injury to an animal. This practice is recommended to be phased out by 2022. Switch trimming is recommended as a preferred alternative. Acknowledging existing animal cruelty laws, NMPF opposes efforts to prescribe specific on-farm animal care practices through federal, state, or local legislative or regulatory action."

The Humane Farm Animal Care association has commended the NMPF on opposing tail docking in dairy cows.

Tail docking is routinely carried out on commercial dairy herds as it improves the milking environment, helps keep cows clean as well as improves udder health.

However it also prohibits the cow from keeping flies away, with the Humane Farm Animal Care association saying that there is no welfare benefit to the cow for undergoing such a painful procedure.

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