September and October 2018 recap


In September, I gave an invited presentation, “Animal welfare: Current trends for dairy cattle and relevance to the AI sector” for the 27th National Association of Animal Breeders Technical Conference. I talked about how scientists study animal welfare, some of the major animal welfare priorities for today’s dairy industry, and what the AI sector can consider to optimize cattle welfare – both within AI facilities and for the wider population of dairy cattle through breeding advances.

In terms of the latter, an example I discussed was the use of polled genetics to breed naturally hornless cattle, which would reduce the need for the painful procedure of disbudding/dehorning. Maci Mueller, a PhD student at UC-Davis, presented a poster on her research at the technical aspects of this concept: what happens when using conventional selection vs. gene editing to breed for polled cattle?


Maci Mueller, PhD student at UC-Davis, with Dr. Van Os at the 27th NAAB

World Dairy Expo

October kicked off with my first visit to World Dairy Expo here in Madison. It’s a huge cattle show and trade show. I had some great conversations with potential research partners, but with the overwhelming amount of exhibitors, I barely got to dip my toes into all the great things to see… Can’t wait for next year!



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