The evaluation of two commercial electric sheep stunning systems: current applied and the effect on heart function

Finola Orford, Elizabeth A Ford, Steven N Brown, Justin L McKinstry, Phillip J Hadley, Jeffrey Lines, Toby G Knowles, Stephen Wotton*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
278 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The maintenance of head-only minimum stunning currents for sheep to ≥1.0 Amp (EC Regulation 1099/2009) was examined in two trials in a commercial abattoir. In the first trial, a Jetco MS100 stunner failed to maintain the current to >1.0 Amp in 118 of the 228 sheep. In a second trial a Jetco MS105 delivered sufficient current in all sheep (n = 275) to meet the legislative requirement, apart from a single animal. Recorded electrocardiograms showed a regular heartbeat, with no evidence of ventricular fibrillation, in all animals in both trials following stunning and neck cut. Only one of the two stun units may therefore be considered to meet the requirements of EC 1099/2009 but both may meet the requirements for halal slaughter where pre-stun is considered acceptable.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)331-337
Number of pages7
JournalAnimal Welfare
Volume25
Issue number3
Early online date1 Aug 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2016

Keywords

  • Animal welfare
  • electrical stunning
  • electrocardiogram
  • halal
  • sheep
  • voltage current

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