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Vets urged to change cattle injection method
“Based on our study findings, I strongly advise to inject all cattle in the neck where possible..."
Study finds current technique more likely to cause nerve damage 

Cattle vets and farmers are being urged to adjust their vaccination technique to reduce the risk of damaging the sciatic nerve in dairy cows.

New research from the University of Nottingham shows there is a high risk of damaging this nerve when injecting cows in the gluteal region. This is particularly true for cattle with a low body condition score, such as those that have recently calved.

In beef cattle, this area is avoided because of the value of primal cut meat; however, the site is still used for injections in dairy cattle owing to convenience.

Participants in the research - who had injected cattle in the gluteal region before - were asked to inject the left and right gluteal region in a cadaver, as if it were ‘a normal cow’. Researchers were surprised to find that 69 per cent of participants injected within 5cm of the sciatic nerve, while several injected right onto the sciatic nerve.

The study also revealed that the nerve is far wider than previously reported in textbooks. In the gluteal region, the nerve was 3.5-4.5cm wide. The depth of the nerve varied depending on the cow’s body condition, but the shallowest point between the skin surface and nerve was just 2.5cm.

Lead author Dr Wendela Wapenaar said: “Based on our study findings, I strongly advise to inject all cattle in the neck where possible; when this is not feasible and the gluteal region is used as a site for intramuscular injection then a more lateral location should be chosen.

“The region between the tuber coxae (hook bone) and the tuber ischium (pin bone) has a substantial muscle mass, and there are no underlying neurological structures at risk. This small change in injection technique may prevent nerve damage and we hope farmers and vets will take this advice on, so we may see less cows with sciatic nerve damage in the future and avoid inflicting pain unnecessarily.”

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Amur leopard cubs caught on camera

News Story 1
 A pair of Amur leopards have been captured on camera for the first time since their birth. The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland announced the birth in July, but with human presence being kept to a minimum, it was not known how many cubs had been born.

Motion sensitive cameras have now revealed that two cubs emerged from the den - at least one of which may be released into the wild in Russia within the next two or three years. The Amur leopard habitat is not open to the public, to help ensure the cubs retain their wild instincts and behaviour. Image © RZSS 

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News Shorts
New canine and feline dentistry manual announced

A new canine and feline dentistry and oral surgery manual has been published by the BSAVA. Announcing the news on its website, the BSAVA said this latest edition contains new step-by-step operative techniques, together with full-colour illustrations and photographs.

‘This is a timely publication; veterinary dentistry is a field that continues to grow in importance for the general veterinary practitioner,’ the BSAVA said. ‘The manual has been fully revised and updated to include the most relevant, evidence-based techniques.’

The BSAVA Manual of Canine and Feline Dentistry and Oral Surgery, 4th edition is available to purchase from