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Veterinaria (Montevideo)

versão impressa ISSN 0376-4362versão On-line ISSN 1688-4809


TEMPLE, Déborah; LAMPREAVE, Gabriel  e  MANTECA, Xavier. Strategies to reduce livestock losses caused by predators. Veterinaria (Montev.) [online]. 2023, vol.59, n.220, e501.  Epub 01-Dez-2023. ISSN 0376-4362.

Despite its recognized sociocultural and ecological role, animals raised in extensive systems face important challenges that can endanger the sustainability of the pastoral system itself. The direct or indirect consequences of the damages caused by predator attacks, either wild carnivores or dogs, are among those challenges. In several Spanish communities, like in Catalonia, dogs cause most livestock damages (Lampreave, 2019). The vast majority of the occurrences are caused by either uncontrolled owned dogs enjoying permanent freedom in a rural environment, dogs that have escaped from their owners, or even dogs that are released by their owners for the night. These cases, especially those occurring at night, are usually extremely serious because they happen when the herd is housed for the night resulting in casualties due to crushing and drowning. Livestock guarding dogs (LGDs) are considered the most effective method to protect livestock from attacks from wild carnivores and from dog attacks. However, despite the efficacy and widespread use of LGDs, many producers still struggle to raise these dogs in an effective manner. As suggested by Van Dijk et al. (2019), practice-driven innovation through the creation of networks has a strong potential to foster changes in current farm practices, improving animal welfare and sustainability. This work describes the adoption of the participatory innovation approach to mitigate the damages caused to livestock by predator attacks. We present the process of building participatory innovation networks carried out in Catalonia in recent years, as well as activities promoted by farmers to optimize the work with livestock guarding dogs in trouble spots.

Palavras-chave : Predation; Grazing; Practice-led networks; Flock dogs; Animal welfare.

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