Browsing by Subject "Behaviour"

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  • Swan, Kirsi-Marja; Telkänranta, Helena; Munsterhjelm, Camilla; Peltoniemi, Olli; Valros, Anna (2021)
    We investigated how providing chewable materials to piglets during the early weeks of life affect sow behaviour, sow and piglet interaction and sow health in pens with farrowing crates. We divided 59 pregnant sows into two treatment groups: the Control group (C, n = 29) and the Rope-Paper group (RP, n = 30). Piglets in the C group had the minimum enrichment required by Finnish legislation. For the RP group, we added sisal ropes and non-glossy newsprint paper. We recorded the behaviour of sows and their litters for a four-hour period during the first 7-18 days of life of the piglets. Skin and udder damage of the sow was recorded once a week five times. Behavioural data was divided into two categories according to the age of the litters. The first group contained litters aged from 7 to 13 days (n(RP) = 22 n(C) = 22) and the second group litters aged 14 days or older (n(RP) = 24 n(C) = 24). Younger piglets (age 7-13 days) in the RP group manipulated the udder more frequently (p <0.01) and the duration of udder manipulation was longer than in the C group (p = 0.02). Further, the RP group had more udder contact events in which 20 % or less of the piglets took part and in which less than 50 % took part (p <0.01 for both). Older piglets (age >= 14 days) in the RP group touched the sows' body more frequently (p <0.05). Sows in the C group were standing (p = 0.01), eating (p = 0.04) and performing oral-nasal manipulation (p <0.01) more often. In the C group, repeated measures of skin lesions differed significantly between observation days (p = 0.00), sows tending to have a higher skin lesion score in observation week 5, with a median score of 1.5 (1-3), than in observation week 4, with a median score of 1 (1-2) (p = 0.06). In conclusion, piglets that had access to chewable materials after birth made more contact with the sow during lactation. However, sows in the C groupperformed more active behaviour. The behavioural mechanisms underlying these changes are not yet clear. Further investigations of the usage of chewable materials in farrowing units equipped with crates and their effects on the behaviour of sows and piglets are therefore warranted.
  • Janket, Sok-Ja; Meurman, Jukka; Diamandis, Eleftherios P. (2020)
    We teach and practice ethical behavior with all clinical and research activities. Notably, we are well educated to treat the subjects participating in research studies with high ethical standards. However, the ethics of interacting with colleagues, or with junior faculty members, are neither well defined nor taught. Dealing with junior faculty has parallels to dealing with vulnerable research subjects such as children, mentally or physically challenged groups, prison inmates or army recruits. Like any other vulnerable population, lower-ranking faculty members are often at the mercy of department chairs or other higher-ranked faculty members. Herein we present some potentially unethical or unfair examples related to academic research. Our goal is to educate the academic community of conceptual paths and to prevent similar untoward occurrences from happening in the future. Unethical behaviors related to sexual misconduct have already been described elsewhere and are not included in this manuscript. © 2020 Janket SJ et al.
  • Ala-Kurikka, Eve; Heinonen, Mari; Mustonen, Katja; Peltoniemi, Olli; Raekallio, Marja; Vainio, Outi; Valros, Anna (2017)
    Lameness is a common health and welfare problem in sows. Little has been published about behavioral changes in lame sows. Ketoprofen is an effective non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug used to treat non-infectious locomotor disorders in pigs. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of lameness and lameness-related pain on the behavior of sows. To evaluate this effect, we studied whether pain alleviation with ketoprofen and clinical relief of lameness were associated with changes in behavior. We allocated randomly 13 lame, early pregnancy sows in three treatment groups receiving either ketoprofen 4 mg/kg, ketoprofen 2 mg/kg (these two groups were pooled for statistical analyses) or placebo. The animals were treated orally for 5 days and lameness scored before and on the last day of the treatment. Lameness was assessed with a 5-grade scoring system and behavior by scan sampling method. A clinically healthy, non-lame control sow was paired with each lame sow and they were examined the same way as lame sows but received no treatment. Lame sows were more passive, they lay more and stood and explored pen fixtures less than the control sows before treatment. After 5-days treatment, placebo-treated sows were in contact with the wall and lying more often when compared to control sows. Ketoprofen-treated sows were more seldom in contact with the wall and exploring bedding more often than placebo-treated sows. Placebo sows tended also to move and explore bedding less than control sows. Lameness had been relieved in altogether 7 out of 13 sows on day 5: six out of nine ketoprofen-medicated sows and one out of four placebo-treated sows. The behaviour of sows with relieved lameness did not differ from that of control sows on day 5. Sows with non-relieved lameness were in contact with the wall and lying more and moving and standing less than control sows. When compared to control sows, sows with non-relieved lameness tended to be more passive. When compared to sows with relieved lameness, sows with non-relieved lameness showed a tendency to be in contact with the wall more often. Our study showed that lameness reduces the activity of sows and affects their position in the pen. Passive behavior seemed at least partly be due to pain and lameness relief was associated with normalization of the behavior.
  • Vodovnik, Chiara; Borshagovski, Anna-Maria; Hakala, Sanja Maria; Leponiemi, Matti; Freitak, Dalial (2021)
    Malnutrition and pesticide exposure are severe factors contributing to the current losses of honeybee colonies. As these stressors often occur combined, we studied the synergistic effects of different diets and pesticide exposure on food choice and mobility of Apis mellifera. We fed beehives with different food sources and exposed the bees to sublethal doses of thiacloprid. After that three different types of honey and pollen were offered in separate choice assays and behaviour towards food was recorded. Thiacloprid significantly affected the food choice in the honey assay, increasing the bees' preference of polyfloral honey, while pre-pesticide diet had no influence. The pollen choice remained similar regardless of treatments, as bees always preferred polyfloral pollen. Interestingly, pesticide exposure affected bee mobility differently, depending on the previous diet. These results indicate that the diet is an important factor influencing the susceptibility to pesticides.
  • Hälli, Outi; Haimi, Minna; Laurila, Tapio; Oliviero, Claudio; Viitasaari, Elina Anna Maria; Orro, Toomas; Peltoniemi, Olli Aarno Tapio; Scheinin, Mika; Siren, Saija; Valros, Anna Elisabet; Heinonen, Mari Leena (2018)
    Background: Infection with respiratory pathogens can influence production as well as animal welfare. There is an economical and ethical need to treat pigs that suffer from respiratory diseases. Our aim was the evaluation of the possible effects of oral NSAID medication given in feed in acute outbreaks of respiratory disease in finishing pigs. The short-and long-term impact of NSAID dosing on clinical signs, daily weight gain, blood parameters and behaviour of growing pigs in herds with acute respiratory infections were evaluated. Four finishing pig farms suffering from acute outbreaks of respiratory disease were visited thrice after outbreak onset (DAY 0, DAY 3 and DAY 30). Pigs with the most severe clinical signs (N = 160) were selected as representative pigs for the herd condition. These pigs were blood sampled, weighed, evaluated clinically and their behaviour was observed. After the first visit, half of the pens (five pigs per pen in four pens totalling 20 representative pigs per herd, altogether 80 pigs in four herds) were treated with oral ketoprofen (target dose 3 mg/kg) mixed in feed for three days and the other half (80 pigs) with a placebo. In three of the herds, some pigs were treated also with antimicrobials, and in one herd the only pharmaceutical treatment was ketoprofen or placebo. Results: Compared to the placebo treatment, dosing of ketoprofen reduced sickness behaviour and lowered the rectal temperature of the pigs. Clinical signs, feed intake or blood parameters were not different between the treatment groups. Ketoprofen treatment was associated with somewhat reduced weight gain over the 30-day follow-up period. Concentration analysis of the S-and R-enantiomers of ketoprofen in serum samples collected on DAY 3 indicated successful oral drug administration. Conclusions: Ketoprofen mainly influenced the behaviour of the pigs, while it had no effect on recovery from respiratory clinical signs. However, the medication may have been started after the most severe clinical phase of the respiratory disease was over, and this delay might complicate the evaluation of treatment effects. Possible negative impact of ketoprofen on production parameters requires further evaluation.
  • Hälli, Outi; Haimi-Hakala, Minna; Laurila, Tapio; Oliviero, Claudio; Viitasaari, Elina; Orro, Toomas; Peltoniemi, Olli; Scheinin, Mika; Sirén, Saija; Valros, Anna; Heinonen, Mari (BioMed Central, 2018)
    Abstract Background Infection with respiratory pathogens can influence production as well as animal welfare. There is an economical and ethical need to treat pigs that suffer from respiratory diseases. Our aim was the evaluation of the possible effects of oral NSAID medication given in feed in acute outbreaks of respiratory disease in finishing pigs. The short- and long-term impact of NSAID dosing on clinical signs, daily weight gain, blood parameters and behaviour of growing pigs in herds with acute respiratory infections were evaluated. Four finishing pig farms suffering from acute outbreaks of respiratory disease were visited thrice after outbreak onset (DAY 0, DAY 3 and DAY 30). Pigs with the most severe clinical signs (N = 160) were selected as representative pigs for the herd condition. These pigs were blood sampled, weighed, evaluated clinically and their behaviour was observed. After the first visit, half of the pens (five pigs per pen in four pens totalling 20 representative pigs per herd, altogether 80 pigs in four herds) were treated with oral ketoprofen (target dose 3 mg/kg) mixed in feed for three days and the other half (80 pigs) with a placebo. In three of the herds, some pigs were treated also with antimicrobials, and in one herd the only pharmaceutical treatment was ketoprofen or placebo. Results Compared to the placebo treatment, dosing of ketoprofen reduced sickness behaviour and lowered the rectal temperature of the pigs. Clinical signs, feed intake or blood parameters were not different between the treatment groups. Ketoprofen treatment was associated with somewhat reduced weight gain over the 30-day follow-up period. Concentration analysis of the S- and R-enantiomers of ketoprofen in serum samples collected on DAY 3 indicated successful oral drug administration. Conclusions Ketoprofen mainly influenced the behaviour of the pigs, while it had no effect on recovery from respiratory clinical signs. However, the medication may have been started after the most severe clinical phase of the respiratory disease was over, and this delay might complicate the evaluation of treatment effects. Possible negative impact of ketoprofen on production parameters requires further evaluation.
  • Jokinen, Olli; Appleby, David; Sandbacka-Saxen, Sofi; Appleby, Tuulia; Valros, Anna (2017)
    Homing puppies before 8 weeks has been associated with lower instance of avoidance and types of aggression in adult dogs. The current study aimed to further assess the impact of homing age on these behaviours in adult dogs. Finnish dogs provide an interesting population for this further study, as based on the clinical experience of the co-authors, puppies in Finland are predominantly reared in domestic maternal environments before first homing, which was not the case in the countries where previous studies have been performed. Online questionnaire-based data on frequencies of problematic behaviours (n = 3689) were analysed using Chi-Square, comparing adult dogs homed at 6-7 weeks (6-7), 8 weeks (8), 9-12 weeks (9-12) and 13-16 weeks (13-16). 31% were 6-7, 41% 8, 23% 9-12, 5% 13-16. If an overall association was observed, pairwise comparisons between homing age groups were conducted. All of the dogs included in the study came from domestic maternal environments, where the puppies were kept in the breeders' living quarters. Homing age was associated with avoiding, growling and snapping at unfamiliar people when away from the home environment (p = 0.004, p = 0.02 and p = 0.008, respectively); avoiding, barking at, growling at and snapping at unfamiliar people visiting the home (p = 0.02, p = 0.02, p = 0.04 and p = 0.03, respectively) and barking at unfamiliar dogs when away from the home environment (p = 0.001). With one exception, dogs homed later than 8 weeks, namely during weeks 9-12 and 13-16, had higher than expected prevalence of avoidance and aggressive behaviour than dogs homed at other ages. The exception being that for the measure, barking at unfamiliar dogs away from the home environment, there were higher than expected values in dogs homed at 8 and 13-16 weeks and lower in dogs homed at 6-7 and 9-12 weeks. This research supports the view that homing age is associated with instances of avoidance behaviour and some types of aggression in adult dogs.
  • Villnäs, Anna; Norkko, Alf; Lehtonen, Kari K. (2019)
    The frequency of seasonal and short-term hypoxia is increasing in coastal seas. How such repeated disturbances affect key species that have important roles for ecosystem processes and functions remains, however, unknown. By performing a field experiment we explored if the bivalve Macoma balthica can cope with short-term, recurring hypoxic stress, and investigated how hypoxia affects the condition of surviving bivalves. By combining data on different levels of biological organization, i.e., on physiology (biomarker response), behaviour and demography, we identified stress responses before the population declined. One pulse of hypoxic disturbance (3 days) resulted in behavioural alterations, as adult M. balthica extended their siphons, emerged towards the sediment surface and expressed decreased reburial rates. However, the demographic structure of the population remained unaltered. Several pulses of recurring hypoxic stress resulted in physiological response with changes in glutathione reductase and acetylcholinesterase enzyme activities. The recurring hypoxic disturbance was observed to affect juvenile bivalves before adults, while pro-longed hypoxia reduced the entire bivalve population. Our results clearly show that hypoxic stress changes the behaviour and physiology of M. balthica before demographic changes occur, which is likely to have severe implications for the contribution of this key species to ecosystem functioning. That a combination of measures at different levels of organization can detect disturbances at an early stage suggests that such an approach would be useful for assessing the effects of disturbances on marine ecosystems that are increasingly affected by anthropogenic change.
  • Ahlström, Fredrik; Mätlik, Kert; Blomqvist, Kim; Liu, Xiaonan; Lilius, Tuomas; Sidorova, Yulia; Kalso, Eija; Rauhala, Pekka; Viisanen, Hanna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    Neuropatisk smärta (NS) är vanligare hos kvinnor. Fastän nyligen utförd forskning tyder på att patofysiologin är olik hos könen, har primärt handjur studerats tidigare. För att bättre förstå könsskillnader vid NS undersökte vi hon- och hanråttors smärtbeteende efter en perifer nerv-skada samt analyserade vävnader med systembiologiska metoder. En perifer nervskada orsakades hos hon- och hanråttor, sham-operationer utfördes på kontroll-grupperna. Mekanisk och köldallodyni mättes med von Frey filament, respektive acetontest före operationerna, efter sju och 21 dagar. Ryggmärgsprovers och dorsalrotsganglioners genexpress-ion analyserades sju dagar efter operationerna. L4-L5 ryggmärgssegment (IBA1 och GFAP) och dorsalrotsganglionerna (CGRP och IB-4) samlades för immunohistokemi och cerebrospinal-vätska för proteomik efter 21 dagar. En kraftigare mekanisk allodyni uppstod hos honråttorna. Bägge könen utvecklade en tidig kraf-tig köldallodyni. De immunohistokemiska markörerna påvisade en liknande nervskada i dorsal-rotganglierna och liknande mikroglia- och astrocytaktivitet i ryggmärgen hos könen. Cerebrospi-nalvätskans proteiner påverkades inte. Många gener i dorsalrotsganglierna visade könsspecifik genexpression efter nervskadan, exempelvis cd28, cd274, ctla4, dpp4, hrh3, il1b och thbs4; i ryggmärgen uppvisade bland annat generna atf3, ccl2, och pdyn könsspecifika förändringar. Hondjuren uppvisade kraftigare smärtbeteende, och vi identifierade många gener som kunde förklara den observerade skillnaden. T-lymfocytresponsen och flera andra till NS kopplade mekanismer verkar vara olika i de två könen. Generna är kandidater för vidare forskning och våra resultat understryker betydelsen av att könen undersöks skilt i smärtstudier. (219 ord)
  • Pekkin, Anne-Marie; Hänninen, Laura; Tiira, Katriina; Koskela, Aija; Pöytäkangas, Merja; Lohi, Hannes; Valros, Anna (2016)
    Fear of loud noises is a common welfare problem in pet dogs. Commercial treatment vests have been tested on dogs to relieve noise phobia, and peripheral oxytocin has been suggested to be one of the stress-relieving mediators. The effect of vests has not, however, been tested in a controlled situation. We tested whether individually customized vests, have an effect on behaviour of severely noise phobic dogs in a double-blinded experiment, where dogs are exposed to loud noises. We also investigated the possible effect of pressure by using two types of vests; a deep pressure vest (DEEP, c. 10–12 mmHg) and a light pressure vest (LIGHT, c. 2–3 mmHg). In addition to behaviour, we studied if the pressure vest has an effect on urine oxytocin level and on saliva cortisol levels. A total of 28 dogs (2-11 years), both female (18) and male (10), were recruited via an ongoing study on the genetic background of noise sensitivity by the Finnish Canine Genetic Research Group. Each dog was tested three times either without vest (CONTROL) or with DEEP or LIGHT vests in a semi-randomized order. The dogś behaviour was video recorded for 6 minutes, including three 2 minutes intervals: pre-noise, noise (70–73 dB firework sound) and recovery. Behavioural parameters included activity, body and tail postures, vocalization, and time spent near owner. Saliva samples were collected twice before and twice after the noise test. Urine samples for oxytocin analyses were collected when the deep pressure vest was first fitted: before dressing the dog and 30 min later. The DEEP vest reduced the lying time of the dogs during the noise interval. During the noise interval total lying time with any vest correlated positively with saliva cortisol, measured after noise interval, indicating that the increased lying time was a sign of a higher stress level in the dogs. Wearing either vests increased the time the dogs spent near their owners during noise interval. Time spent near the owner when wearing the DEEP vest during the recovery interval correlated positively with the urine oxytocin. These results indicate oxytocin might be related to the doǵs tendency to seek owner support and the vests might effect this behaviour positively. We did not find a clear therapeutic effect of using pressure vests in noise phobic dogs. However, our results indicate the pressure vest might reduce the acute stress reaction and speed up the recovery after stress.
  • Katzmarzyk, Peter T.; Barreira, Tiago V.; Broyles, Stephanie T.; Champagne, Catherine M.; Chaput, Jean-Philippe; Fogelholm, Mikael; Hu, Gang; Johnson, William D.; Kuriyan, Rebecca; Kurpad, Anura; Lambert, Estelle V.; Maher, Carol; Maia, Jose; Matsudo, Victor; Olds, Tim; Onywera, Vincent; Sarmiento, Olga L.; Standage, Martyn; Tremblay, Mark S.; Tudor-Locke, Catrine; Zhao, Pei; Church, Timothy S. (2013)
    Background: The primary aim of the International Study of Childhood Obesity, Lifestyle and the Environment (ISCOLE) was to determine the relationships between lifestyle behaviours and obesity in a multi-national study of children, and to investigate the influence of higher-order characteristics such as behavioural settings, and the physical, social and policy environments, on the observed relationships within and between countries. Methods/design: The targeted sample included 6000 10-year old children from 12 countries in five major geographic regions of the world (Europe, Africa, the Americas, South-East Asia, and the Western Pacific). The protocol included procedures to collect data at the individual level (lifestyle, diet and physical activity questionnaires, accelerometry), family and neighborhood level (parental questionnaires), and the school environment (school administrator questionnaire and school audit tool). A standard study protocol was developed for implementation in all regions of the world. A rigorous system of training and certification of study personnel was developed and implemented, including web-based training modules and regional in-person training meetings. Discussion: The results of this study will provide a robust examination of the correlates of adiposity and obesity in children, focusing on both sides of the energy balance equation. The results will also provide important new information that will inform the development of lifestyle, environmental, and policy interventions to address and prevent childhood obesity that may be culturally adapted for implementation around the world. ISCOLE represents a multi-national collaboration among all world regions, and represents a global effort to increase research understanding, capacity and infrastructure in childhood obesity.