14 January 2015
Plan ahead for livestock when cold weather is forecast
The winter weather can be tough on livestock and animals may need a little extra protection at this time of year. Making a contingency plan can make all the difference in keeping livestock safe and sound in extreme weather conditions.
British Veterinary Association (BVA) President John Blackwell has some advice for farmers as the weather gets colder. He said:
“At this time of year it can be tempting to ignore weather warnings and assume forecasters are being overly cautious. But given the cost of being caught out, unable to reach animals who may be hungry or in distress, I'd encourage farmers to exercise extra caution during the cold snap.
“Consider moving animals from high ground before extreme weather arrives or at least make sure there is fodder ready on site. Water provision needs to be checked as well to make sure animals can survive if temporarily stranded.
“Remember that snow and storms can also disrupt delivery to your farm so it may be a good idea to stock up on necessities just in case.
“There is no substitute for a clear contingency plan, thought out and prepared before bad weather arrives. It's better to have a plan and not need it than to lose animals in circumstances that could have been avoided.”