Management practices and cow comfort of crossbred dairy cows in youth managed dairy farm enterprises, South Gondar Zone, Amhara Region, Ethiopia


  • Mequanint Biks College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, Debre Tabor University, Debre Tabor, Ethiopia
  • Asaminew Tassew Bahir Dar University
  • Fisseha Moges College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, Bahir Dar University, Bahir Dar, Ethiopia



Cow comfort, Diry enterprise, Managment practice, Renovation of cow barn


Good dairy farming methods and cow comfort are essential variables in reproductive efficiency, milk output, milk quality, and dairy cow health. The purpose of this study was to look into the management techniques and cow comfort status of crossbred dairy cows in youth managed dairy farm enterprises in Ethiopia's Amhara region's South Gondar zone. All (20) youth-managed dairy farm enterprises were chosen and questioned using a pre-tested semi-structured questionnaire, and all (204) lactation dairy cows were chosen for cow comfort assessment. The SPSS version 22 program was used to analyze the data. According to the findings, the most common feed sources used for their dairy cattle were formulated and unformulated agro-industrial byproducts followed by non-conventional and hay. Piped (35%) and bore (30%) water were the most common water sources for dairy cattle, with the majority of farms allowing free access to water. The majority of dairy farm firms (70%) uses artificial insemination as well as bull services. The majority of dairy farm enterprises (55%) had shared sheds, followed by individual sheds (45%) built with government assistance (55%), and family (30%) with the same design and construction. The challenges confronting dairy farm enterprises were ranked feed scarcity and high feed costs first, followed by a lack of access to land, a lack of access to markets, and a lack of credit, whereas the opportunities for dairy farm enterprises were ranked first increased demand for milk and milk products first, followed by rapid urbanization, rapid population growth, and the availability of cheap labor. The vast majority of cows (92%) were severely lame, followed by moderate lameness (83%) and the vast majority of cows (52.5%) had moderately injured legs, followed by severely injured legs. The udder and leg cleanliness of most cows was mid cleanliness (52.7%), as opposed to dirty (30%) and clean (17.2%) with a low cow comfort index (0.48). The mean stall length, bed length, brisket board height, neck rail height, lung space, feeder height, and feeder width were 239±16 cm, 222.7±28.3 cm, 10.5±3.6cm, 61.5±15.3 cm, 128.15±21.5 cm, 40.6±8.7 cm, and 36.7±6.9 cm, respectively. The results also revealed that the overall floor softness scored marginal (45%) softness rather than hard (30%) and normal (25%) floor softness. The majority of dairy farm enterprises (55%) did not provide bedding material for their cows and, the bedding materials include straw, hay, and sawdust. Bedding materials are renewed once a month (37.5%), twice a week (37.5%), and once a week (25%). The frequency of manure removal was twice daily (60%), three times daily (30%), and once daily (20%). The findings revealed that the cow’s comfort status is poor, so it is recommended that the barn be renovated routine management practices be improved, and assistance from the government and other relevant stakeholders is required in order to obtain credit to renovate the cow barn and improve management practices.