The influence of shavings bed thickness on nocturnal recumbent behaviour in horses

Linda Greening, Francesca Modena

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

Abstract

As a large prey animal, the horse appears to have adapted to function optimally on a comparatively low amount of sleep, averaging 3 hours inside of a 24-hour time budget. Such knowledge stems from ECG and EEG studies, which more recently have been supported by behavioural observation studies. However, knowledge about what is quantifiable as 'good quality sleep', and the consequences of sleep deprivation in the horse is currently lacking. This information may be critical from an animal welfare perspective. In this regard, a growing body of work is investigating factors that promote and reduce the amount of nocturnal sleep available to the horse. The most recent study in this field pertains to the depth of bedding substrate in the stable. Six horses (mixed breed, age range 12-18 years) were observed using CCTV equipment between 2030 and 0630 over twelve consecutive nights during November 2018. Duration of sternal recumbency (SR) and lateral recumbency (LR), as inferred measures of different sleep states, were recorded using continuous focal sampling against a predetermined ethogram. Using a cross-over design, three horses (Group A) were given shavings bed of normal depth (5cm) whilst three horses (Group B) were provided with a deeper shavings bed (10cm) for the first four nights. Groups were then crossed over for the next four nights (five to eight). From night nine to twelve, all six horses returned to normal 5cm bedding depth. Differences in recumbency states (SR and LR) were tested using Wilcoxon Signed Rank (significance set at p<0.05). Overall, a significant difference (Z=-2.56; P=0.011) was observed between total duration of LR when bedded on 5cm (23 minutes) and 10cm beds (41 minutes). No significant difference (Z-1.63; P&gt;0.05) was observed for duration of SR when comparing 5cm (137 minutes) and 10cm beds (122 minutes). A significant difference (Z=-1.99; P=0.046) was also detected for total duration of LR when bedded on 5cm during nights nine to twelve (38 minutes) compared to 5cm during the cross-over experimental nights (23 minutes), suggesting some lasting effect of a deeper bed. Results therefore imply that increasing bedding depth could positively influence the occurrence of lateral recumbency (linked to the occurrence of paradoxical sleep) and thus potentially improve the welfare of the stabled
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - May 2019
Event9th Alltech-Hartpury Student Conference - Hartpury University, United Kingdom
Duration: 8 May 20198 May 2019

Conference

Conference9th Alltech-Hartpury Student Conference
CountryUnited Kingdom
Period8/5/198/5/19

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nocturnal activity
sleep
horses
duration
horse breeds
animal welfare
stems
animals

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Greening, L., & Modena, F. (2019). The influence of shavings bed thickness on nocturnal recumbent behaviour in horses. Poster session presented at 9th Alltech-Hartpury Student Conference , United Kingdom.
Greening, Linda ; Modena, Francesca. / The influence of shavings bed thickness on nocturnal recumbent behaviour in horses. Poster session presented at 9th Alltech-Hartpury Student Conference , United Kingdom.1 p.
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abstract = "As a large prey animal, the horse appears to have adapted to function optimally on a comparatively low amount of sleep, averaging 3 hours inside of a 24-hour time budget. Such knowledge stems from ECG and EEG studies, which more recently have been supported by behavioural observation studies. However, knowledge about what is quantifiable as 'good quality sleep', and the consequences of sleep deprivation in the horse is currently lacking. This information may be critical from an animal welfare perspective. In this regard, a growing body of work is investigating factors that promote and reduce the amount of nocturnal sleep available to the horse. The most recent study in this field pertains to the depth of bedding substrate in the stable. Six horses (mixed breed, age range 12-18 years) were observed using CCTV equipment between 2030 and 0630 over twelve consecutive nights during November 2018. Duration of sternal recumbency (SR) and lateral recumbency (LR), as inferred measures of different sleep states, were recorded using continuous focal sampling against a predetermined ethogram. Using a cross-over design, three horses (Group A) were given shavings bed of normal depth (5cm) whilst three horses (Group B) were provided with a deeper shavings bed (10cm) for the first four nights. Groups were then crossed over for the next four nights (five to eight). From night nine to twelve, all six horses returned to normal 5cm bedding depth. Differences in recumbency states (SR and LR) were tested using Wilcoxon Signed Rank (significance set at p<0.05). Overall, a significant difference (Z=-2.56; P=0.011) was observed between total duration of LR when bedded on 5cm (23 minutes) and 10cm beds (41 minutes). No significant difference (Z-1.63; P>0.05) was observed for duration of SR when comparing 5cm (137 minutes) and 10cm beds (122 minutes). A significant difference (Z=-1.99; P=0.046) was also detected for total duration of LR when bedded on 5cm during nights nine to twelve (38 minutes) compared to 5cm during the cross-over experimental nights (23 minutes), suggesting some lasting effect of a deeper bed. Results therefore imply that increasing bedding depth could positively influence the occurrence of lateral recumbency (linked to the occurrence of paradoxical sleep) and thus potentially improve the welfare of the stabled",
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Greening, L & Modena, F 2019, 'The influence of shavings bed thickness on nocturnal recumbent behaviour in horses' 9th Alltech-Hartpury Student Conference , United Kingdom, 8/5/19 - 8/5/19, .

The influence of shavings bed thickness on nocturnal recumbent behaviour in horses. / Greening, Linda; Modena, Francesca.

2019. Poster session presented at 9th Alltech-Hartpury Student Conference , United Kingdom.

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

TY - CONF

T1 - The influence of shavings bed thickness on nocturnal recumbent behaviour in horses

AU - Greening, Linda

AU - Modena, Francesca

PY - 2019/5

Y1 - 2019/5

N2 - As a large prey animal, the horse appears to have adapted to function optimally on a comparatively low amount of sleep, averaging 3 hours inside of a 24-hour time budget. Such knowledge stems from ECG and EEG studies, which more recently have been supported by behavioural observation studies. However, knowledge about what is quantifiable as 'good quality sleep', and the consequences of sleep deprivation in the horse is currently lacking. This information may be critical from an animal welfare perspective. In this regard, a growing body of work is investigating factors that promote and reduce the amount of nocturnal sleep available to the horse. The most recent study in this field pertains to the depth of bedding substrate in the stable. Six horses (mixed breed, age range 12-18 years) were observed using CCTV equipment between 2030 and 0630 over twelve consecutive nights during November 2018. Duration of sternal recumbency (SR) and lateral recumbency (LR), as inferred measures of different sleep states, were recorded using continuous focal sampling against a predetermined ethogram. Using a cross-over design, three horses (Group A) were given shavings bed of normal depth (5cm) whilst three horses (Group B) were provided with a deeper shavings bed (10cm) for the first four nights. Groups were then crossed over for the next four nights (five to eight). From night nine to twelve, all six horses returned to normal 5cm bedding depth. Differences in recumbency states (SR and LR) were tested using Wilcoxon Signed Rank (significance set at p<0.05). Overall, a significant difference (Z=-2.56; P=0.011) was observed between total duration of LR when bedded on 5cm (23 minutes) and 10cm beds (41 minutes). No significant difference (Z-1.63; P>0.05) was observed for duration of SR when comparing 5cm (137 minutes) and 10cm beds (122 minutes). A significant difference (Z=-1.99; P=0.046) was also detected for total duration of LR when bedded on 5cm during nights nine to twelve (38 minutes) compared to 5cm during the cross-over experimental nights (23 minutes), suggesting some lasting effect of a deeper bed. Results therefore imply that increasing bedding depth could positively influence the occurrence of lateral recumbency (linked to the occurrence of paradoxical sleep) and thus potentially improve the welfare of the stabled

AB - As a large prey animal, the horse appears to have adapted to function optimally on a comparatively low amount of sleep, averaging 3 hours inside of a 24-hour time budget. Such knowledge stems from ECG and EEG studies, which more recently have been supported by behavioural observation studies. However, knowledge about what is quantifiable as 'good quality sleep', and the consequences of sleep deprivation in the horse is currently lacking. This information may be critical from an animal welfare perspective. In this regard, a growing body of work is investigating factors that promote and reduce the amount of nocturnal sleep available to the horse. The most recent study in this field pertains to the depth of bedding substrate in the stable. Six horses (mixed breed, age range 12-18 years) were observed using CCTV equipment between 2030 and 0630 over twelve consecutive nights during November 2018. Duration of sternal recumbency (SR) and lateral recumbency (LR), as inferred measures of different sleep states, were recorded using continuous focal sampling against a predetermined ethogram. Using a cross-over design, three horses (Group A) were given shavings bed of normal depth (5cm) whilst three horses (Group B) were provided with a deeper shavings bed (10cm) for the first four nights. Groups were then crossed over for the next four nights (five to eight). From night nine to twelve, all six horses returned to normal 5cm bedding depth. Differences in recumbency states (SR and LR) were tested using Wilcoxon Signed Rank (significance set at p<0.05). Overall, a significant difference (Z=-2.56; P=0.011) was observed between total duration of LR when bedded on 5cm (23 minutes) and 10cm beds (41 minutes). No significant difference (Z-1.63; P>0.05) was observed for duration of SR when comparing 5cm (137 minutes) and 10cm beds (122 minutes). A significant difference (Z=-1.99; P=0.046) was also detected for total duration of LR when bedded on 5cm during nights nine to twelve (38 minutes) compared to 5cm during the cross-over experimental nights (23 minutes), suggesting some lasting effect of a deeper bed. Results therefore imply that increasing bedding depth could positively influence the occurrence of lateral recumbency (linked to the occurrence of paradoxical sleep) and thus potentially improve the welfare of the stabled

M3 - Poster

ER -

Greening L, Modena F. The influence of shavings bed thickness on nocturnal recumbent behaviour in horses. 2019. Poster session presented at 9th Alltech-Hartpury Student Conference , United Kingdom.