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Why use pain relief?

The provision of pain relief with routine husbandry practices is now an expectation. Not only do producers need to consider the use of pain relief products in their animals, but also alternative husbandry procedures and management practices.

This training package outlines available products, their costs and when they are suitable to use, as well as best practice recommendations for castration in beef calves.

A note on the cost-benefit of pain relief in cattle

While pain experienced during well carried out routine husbandry procedures may result in decreased feed intake in the short-term, animals generally compensate. Subsequently, 2–4 weeks later there is no measurable benefit from pain relief. The benefit for producers in using pain relief during routine husbandry procedures is not only for their own peace of mind, but also in meeting consumer expectations and therefore protecting the product they market. Where producers engage in quality assurance programs that require pain relief as part of these programs, specific financial benefits may accrue to individual producers.

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