Slaughtered Cattle and Reasons for Slaughtering Cows in Ember Months at Lafenwa Abattoir in Abeokuta, Nigeria (Published)
High incidence of slaughtering of gravid cows has damnable effects on productivity of animal protein to the ever-increasing population in Nigeria. This study was conducted to evaluate the foetal losses from the slaughtering of pregnant cows at Lafenwa abattoir –Abeokuta, Ogun state. Information on demographical pattern of the butchers, herd size and composition of slaughtered animals as well as the reasons for slaughtering were assessed through the use of a structured questionnaire. Most of the butchers fell within the active age (31-40 years), married (83.3%) and having formal education at various levels. It was found that a total of 15112 cattle were slaughtered of which 76.7% were cows. The percentage of foetal wastage was 10.7%, while one foetus was lost for every nine cattle and seven cows slaughtered. Pregnant cows were mostly slaughtered for ceremonies and festivals while sometimes, it was due to poverty or disease condition of the animal. Control of foetal wastage in abattoirs will go a long way in increasing the population of livestock in Nigeria. Knowledge of the magnitude of bovine foetal wastage in abattoirs is necessary to forestall further occurrences.