Animal transportation can be a bit of a headache to deal with. Imagine the kind of preparation Noah needed to go through with the Ark. Animals are sentient beings that need to be handled with sensitivity. Many times, transportation of livestock can end in disastrous outcomes with financial losses that can be avoided.
Ark protocol is a term coined by one of our Ngamia personnel. It refers to the major things you need to consider before moving your animals, be they cattle, poultry or even wild animals. The Ark protocol includes three major considerations; Physical health, sanitation and comfort. Let’s break it down further.
- Physical Health
The discomfort of traveling when you are ill, is an experience known all too well by human beings. Animals are no different and are bound to feel even worse irritation given their traveling conditions and inability to ask for a painkiller from time to time. It may be necessary to do a routine checkup with your vet for the animals you are about to transport just to ensure they will be feeling okay throughout the journey.
It might also be helpful to be water-wise and counteract dehydration. A neat trick is to put a little bit of lemon extract, sports drink or peppermint in their water in the week before the move. The flavoring hides the taste of foreign water sources and will encourage regular drinking at the new destination.
A final safeguard health-wise could be to pack some snacks for them to feed on during the journey. A little bit of hay for cattle or some grains for your poultry will be perfect for bolstering digestive motility and decreasing stress.
Let’s talk sanitation, moving animals in a trailer can be messy and a bit nasty. The best that can be done for this is cleaning the vessel to be used beforehand and adding straw or sawdust shavings as a bedding to absorb the excretory elements produced by the animals. This way the animals are not a health hazard to themselves and their travel buddies.
Stressful animals don’t make for good produce, be it milk, eggs or even meat. Therefore, when moving animals, it is important to keep them as relaxed and comfortable as possible both with the journey and the environmental change.
Owning the vessel used for the transportation is an added advantage as it is possible to make sure your animals willingly board and get off as well as stand still while in the vessel prior to the move. You can also practice herding your cattle in and out of the vessel, so that they are familiar with the situation. If you do not have access to the vessel prior to the move, a helpful trick is rewarding (bribing really) with a small amount of feed as a form of positive reinforcement.
Dealing with beings we can’t communicate with can be a difficult task, which is why it is helpful to understand their needs as caretakers and rely on measures that have been proven to improve their well-being.
Category: Logistics, Transport