General condition for transport of Livestock


Healthy animals should be transported, and a qualified veterinarian should certify it. 

Young animals should be separated from adult animals and advanced pregnant state animals should be separated from other animals. 

General condition for transport of Livestock

When animals are transported from endemic area, necessary permission should be obtained from concerned authorities for proper health condition. 

14 days prior to transportation necessary vaccination procedure should be completed for the particular livestock.

During transport all the livestock should be given humane treatment.

Sufficient quantity of feed and fodder should be carried during transport.

The vehicle should be examined for cleanliness; the floor and walls shall be undamaged and should be free from nails and other sharp edges.

The vehicle should be sprayed with disinfectant solution.

Materials for bedding such as straw or hay should be placed on the floor to avoid injury and the bedding should not be less than 5 cm thickness.

Animals during transport should not be tied up at leg. 

General Condition for transport:

Each consignment shall bear a bold red label showing the following particulars.

o Number and kind of animals loaded

o Name and address and telephone number of the consignor (sender) and consignee (receiver)

o Quantity of ration to be fed

o Consignee should be informed about the train or vehicle in which the consignment of cattle is sent and its arrival time in advance

In case of journey for more than 12 hours an attendant should be present at all the time and should ensure the proper conditions are maintained during transport.  Cattle, sheep and goat should be unloaded by every 8 hours and should be watered. The attendant should not permit the sheep and goat to sit down during transit. 

 Apart from the above general condition some species of livestock require specific conditions for transport, and it also depends upon the mode of transport.

Mode of transport of Livestock:

Train Travel:

Animals shall be transported by passenger trains only. In areas where such trains are not run, the equines may be transported by goods trains provided that special precautions are taken. 

Ordinary Cattle wagon when used for transportation of horses, ponies, mules and donkeys along with their foals, shall carry not more than 6 of these animals on broad gauge, 4 on meter gauge and 3 on narrow gauge. Attendants shall be allowed to travel along with the animals in each wagon. 

In extreme summer, water shall be sprinkled over the wagons by the railway authorities to bring down temperature; ice cubes in specially made containers may be placed inside the wagon if recommended by veterinarian.  Every wagon shall have 2 attendants if the animals are more than 2 in number. 

Animal shall be loaded parallel to the rails facing each other. 

Material for padding (Kapok) such as paddy straw shall be placed on the floor to avoid injury if an animal lies down. This shall not be less than 6 cm thick. 

Rations for the journey shall be carried in the middle of the wagon. 

To provide adequate ventilation the upper door of one side of the wagon shall be kept open and properly fixed. 

This door of the wagon shall have wire gauge welded to it to prevent burning cylinders from the engine entering the wagon and leading to the outbreak of fire. 

2 breast bars shall be provided on each side of the wagon one at a height of 60 to 90 cm and other at 100 to 110 cm. 

Valuable animal like horses and donkey, stallions, racehorses and brood mares shall be transported in EH or EHH horse box. These shall be provided by the railways.

Truck Travel:

Specially fitted vehicles with a special type of tailboard and padding around the sides shall be used. 

Ordinary lorries shall be provided with anti-slipping material on the floor. 

Bamboo poles of atleast 8 cm in diameter between each animal and 2 stout batons at the back shall be provided to prevent the animal from falling. 

To prevent horses being frightened or injured their heads shall face left to the vehicle away from the passing traffic. 

Each lorry shall carry 4 to 6 animals. 

Each vehicle shall be provided with one attendant.  The speed of the truck in which equines (horses, Ponies, mules, donkeys) are transported shall not exceed 40 km per hour. 

All starting, stopping and turning shall be done slowly.  While transporting the animals the truck shall not be loaded with any other merchandise.

Sea Travel:

All ships detailed for conveying animals shall be inspected for fittings by a board consisting of a marine and a veterinary officer. 

The ship may preferably be of shelter deck type and have ample mechanical ventilation, good drainage and arrangements for exercising the animals. 

Horses may normally be accommodated in a single stalls and mules in pens. Each pen holding 4 to 5 mules.

Providing portholes and permanent air trunks or electric powers on all decks shall ensure more ventilation. Exhaust fans shall be installed to below out foul air. 

The pens shall be mucked out twice day decks scrubbed once every 24 hours. This shall be done when animals are being exercised. 

All standings shall be towards the ship with heads facing inwards. 

Length between breast rail and back lining shall be 2 metres. Breast rails shall be 1.1 m from the platform. 

Passage between 2 rows of pens should be not less than 1.5 metres. 

Parting boards between pens shall be 3 metres. 

To avoid distress especially during hot weather the ship may sail immediately after embarking. 

Entries (stallions) shall not be kept in same decks. 

Colts and fillies shall be kept on the exposed decks. 

A pharmacy and spare stalls for 5% animals shall be made available.

Air Travel:

In aircrafts animals are either secured in crates of 2 to 3 horses each or kept tied in pens 4 to 5 to each pen.

The floors of aircrafts are provided protected by a thick layer of wood shavings and covered with polyethylene sheets. Sides of the body are well padded. 

All animals shall be administrated tranquilizers before loading. If an animal becomes considerable within the aircraft, it shall be destroyed. 

A horse killer should always be carried for this purpose. 

All aircraft for transporting animals shall be inspected for fitting etc by a board comprising an air force and veterinary officer. 

Entires (stallions) and brood mares shall not be accommodated in same crate. 

Loading shall be affected through ramps or lifts. 

An attendant shall accompany the animal consignment. 

A veterinary first-aid kit with the veterinarian shall always be available in the aircraft. 

Coir matting shall be placed on the floor so that loaded animal does not produce any sound during journey. 

Hay bundles shall be placed in between the hind legs and sides of the aircraft.


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