Physiological and biochemical responses in German Fawn kids subjected to cooling treatments under Mediterranean climate conditions
This study was conducted to determine the effects of different physical modifications (sprinkler and fan) related to heat stress during summer on relevant blood biochemical measures and physiological responses, such as rectal temperature (RT), respiration rate (RR), heart rate (HR), testis temperature (TT), and head temperature (HT), in kids. In total, 32 male German Fawn × Hair kids at 6 months of age were divided into 4 groups of 8. Treatments were as follows: group A: (no sprinkler, no fan) (control); group B: sprinkler only (at 1000-1100 and 1400-1500), no fan; group C: fan (1.5 m/h between 1000-1800), no sprinkler; group D: sprinkler (at 1000-1100 and 1400-1500) and fan (1.5 m/h between 1000-1800). Sprinkler + fan treatment decreased RR, RT, TT, and HT (P < 0.05), whereas sprinkler + fan, sprinkler only, and fan only increased HR. Sprinkler + fan treatment significantly decreased T3 and T4 secretion (P < 0.05). Time × fan × sprinkler interaction significantly affected HCT (P < 0.05), whereas F × S interaction affected CHO (P < 0.05). According to blood chemistry and physiological responses, fan treatment was more effective than sprinkler and may be recommended as a means to alleviate heat stress in goats under Mediterranean climate conditions; however, further research is needed to optimize sprinkler cooling.
Key words: Blood measures, heat stress, physiological response, cooling methods, kids