Restyling Alternaria


Genetic background of claw health in dairy cattle

Promovendus D (Dianne) van der Spek MSc
Promotor JAM (Johan) van Arendonk
Copromotor H (Henk) Bovenhuis
Organisatie Wageningen University & Research, Animal Breeding and Genetics

vr 11 september 2015 11:00 tot 12:30

Locatie Auditorium, building number 362
Generaal Foulkesweg 1
6703 BG Wageningen


Claw disorders in dairy cattle affect animal welfare and cause economic losses for the farmer. I investigated whether claw disorders in Holstein dairy cattle have a genetic background in order to be able to reduce claw disorders by genetic selection. I found that not only claw disorders are heritable, but also the need for claw trimming. Cows with a high need for claw trimming are not favorable and selection to reduce the need for claw trimming is feasible. The heritable variation of the need for claw trimming was confirmed in a different dairy cattle breed; the Montbeliarde. Several suggestive markers in Holstein DNA influencing the development of claw disorders were identified, although a major gene was not found. Furthermore, the accuracy and selection response of progeny testing of bulls using information of their daughters versus genomic selection using genotypes as an information source to improve claw health, was discussed.