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Restraint and Handling of Wild and Domestic Animals second edition, 1995 By Murray E. Fowler EO 003.01 Conduct Animal Control and Handling.

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Presentation on theme: "Restraint and Handling of Wild and Domestic Animals second edition, 1995 By Murray E. Fowler EO 003.01 Conduct Animal Control and Handling."— Presentation transcript:

1 Restraint and Handling of Wild and Domestic Animals second edition, 1995 By Murray E. Fowler EO Conduct Animal Control and Handling

2 General Concept Restraint Technique Factors: 1. Will it be safe for the handler; 2. Does it provide maximum safety for the animal; 3. Does the restraining method make it possible to perform the intended procedure; and 4. Is constant observation possible following restraint until its recovered fully from the physical/chemical effects.

3 General Concept Animals often require transportation, medication and handling. With wild animals, any captive situation requires some form of restraint.

4 General Concept To be successful in working with animals, the handler must understand their behavioural characteristics and the aspects of their psychological make-up that will be in their best interest. Successful handlers must also understand and have a working acquaintance with the tools of restraint, understand the use of voice, manual restraint, chemical restraint and restraint devices.

5 When to restrain considerations Environmental Conditions; Behavioural Aspects; Hierarchal Status; Health Status; Territoriality; and Humane Considerations.

6 Environmental considerations: Thermo-regulation is a critical factor in many restraint procedures: During hotter months select a cooler time of day to restrain. Cooling fans may be required & always place restrained animals in the shade to avoid radiant heat gain. Conversely, use the suns heat if the weather is cool.

7 Environmental considerations: Humidity: Avoid handling if humidity is 70 – 90 % Cooling is difficult under humid conditions.

8 Environmental considerations: Light & Dark: Take advantage of light & dark. Diurnal animals (seen during the day) may be best handled at night when they have difficulty seeing. Nocturnal species may best be handled under bright lights.

9 Behavioural Aspects: An animals response to restraint varies with stage of life: A tiger cub grasped by the back of the neck will curl up like a kitten however this isnt the response in an adult! A female in oestrus or with offspring close by reacts differently than other times. Male deer, elk caribou go into rut in the fall. Although it may be safe to enter an enclosure in spring or summer. It isnt in the fall!

10 Hierarchal Status Most social animals establish a pecking order & a person trying to catch one animal may be attacked by other members of the group. Animals removed from a group for too long may not be accepted back in the group; or Some animals may reject an infant returned if it has human scent on it.

11 Health Status Transporting in crates, trucks & planes is stressful & recently transported animals are poor restraint risks. Allow animal time to acclimate to a new environment before additional restraints.

12 Health Status It may be difficult to get body temp & heart rate due to excitement. Ex: a bison with dermatitis was caught to check on its skin and the animal died of over exertion during the process. Dont handle animals if it isnt necessary! Clinical experience may be the governing factor.

13 Territorial Domestic animals differ in response to handling depending on where they are. Many wild animals are highly territorial & in order to work on them, they must be moved to a new enclosure.

14 Humane Considerations It is incumbent on the individual manipulating an animals life to be concerned for its welfare (feelings, pain, psychological effects); One must be able to be objective and see that the manipulations are in the animals best interests; The handler must plan each restraint in detail, perceive the feelings of the animal; and Take steps to alleviate its pain.

15 Humane Considerations During a restraint procedure: Time is crucial – get the job done fast!!! Remember: (1) Safety to the handler; (2) Safety to the animal; and (3) Will it do the job?

16 Tools of Restraint Instances of tool use; Psychological restraint; Weapons used against humans; Diminishing sense perception; Confinement; Extension of arms; Physical barriers; Physical force; Chemical restraint; and Special techniques.

17 Tools of Restraint Tools may make a job easier or more efficient; Tools must be kept in good repair; the art and practice of their used must be kept toned up; Some tools may be desirable for dealing with one species and be contraindicated when working with another.

18 Tools of Restraint For ease of discussion, the tools have been placed into seven categories

19 Tool use categories 1.Psychological restraint – understanding an animal biological characteristic enables manipulation; 2.Diminishing sense perception of an animal; 3.Confinement; 4.Lending added strength to or extension of the arms; 5.Physical barriers – used to protect us or allow closer view of animal; 6.Physical force – used to subdue animals; 7.Chemical restraint – used to sedate, immobilize or anaesthetize animals.

20 Psychological Restraints Each species has its own behavioural pattern/traits: A successful animal handler must know a given species particular behavioural patterns. Ex: When handling an elephant from a rope secured around the trunk, it is the nature of the animal to pull back which could be used to direct the animal to sit down rather than fall to its side during narcotic immobilization. The same technique would be dangerously unsuitable for handling a carnivore because a carnivore would attack instead of pulling back on the rope.

21 Psychological Restraints Voice tone is an important tool and emotional state can be reflected in the voice. Voice tone example: A nervous person who walks into a horse stall and their nervousness can be sensed by the horse, the animal will back away while a confident handler can walk up to the animal.

22 Weapons used against humans All animals have defence mechanisms & in restraint situations the restrainer is the enemy. Generally a display warning will initially be given – showing teeth etc before using weapons: –Teeth, claws, talons, bills or beak. All carnivores are prone to using teeth. Large animals can crush a handler.

23 Weapons used against humans All carnivores are prone to using teeth: The bite of many carnivores is serious Birds are capable of biting or pecking & large birds such as Macaws can break bone with their beaks. Large raptorial species (hawks, eagles) can tear tissue. Animals with horns can gore a restrainer & invertebrates can sting.

24 Weapons used against humans Hoofed animals will often kick. Spitting venom is done by cobras & some animals such as camels will regurgitate & spit. Large animals can crush a handler. In short the whole spectrum of the animal kingdom has abilities of self- protection.

25 Diminishing Sense Perception Vision; Sound; Touch; and Temperature for reptiles.

26 Diminishing Sense Perception Vision: Reducing or eliminating an animals visual communication with the environment is an important restraint technique. Blind folding a horse makes it easier to introduce new environments – such as a trailer or new stall.

27 Diminishing Sense Perception Sound: Excessive sound (talking, noisy vehicles) may upset an animal. Restraint is easier with sounds dampened and harsh tones of voice eliminated or diminished in proximity to the animal.

28 Diminishing Sense Perception Touch: A skilled handler of domestic animals can accomplish much by proper use of the hands on the animal. Soothing, by stroking in the proper direction in the proper areas of the body, can be very valuable. Most untrained wild animals respond negatively to the touch of a person and institute a defence mechanism in response.

29 Diminishing Sense Perception Temperature for reptiles: Cooling diminishes an animals ability to respond to stimuli. Hypothermia has been used to render nervous species of lizards & snakes to make dealing with them for surgery easier but a potential hazard exists for respiratory infections.

30 Confinement Confinement is a tool of restraint but the acceptable degree of confinement may vary depending on the species and the situation. Close confinement makes it easier to evaluate clinical signs.

31 Confinement Squeeze cages are a valuable tool but must accommodate the physiological requirements for each animal. Examples are transfer cages (various reptiles), tubes for snakes or bags or towels used for cats or birds.

32 Confinement The closest & most stressful confinement is a special cage such as a transfer cage.

33 Confinement Domestic cattle or horses may be placed in stocks for examination. Confinement can also be done with ropes or cables.

34 Methods of restraint for extension of arms Ropes: Ropes are used to capture & restrain animals. Snares: snares are used to capture & restrain animals however a snare, used carelessly can injure an animal. Nets: Nets are an important tool that can come in all sizes and shapes from those used to capture tiny insects to very large cargo nets for musk-ox. They must however be kept in good condition and the size of the mesh must correspond to the size of animal/bird etc.

35 Methods of restraint for extension of arms Hoop Nets: Hoop nets with handles (to twist the net over the animal) can be used to restrain at a distance however the hoop edge can injure. Nose tongs: Tongs fit into the nose to handle Domestic bovine species. Snake hook: In its various forms, is utilized in handling all species of reptiles. Chains: Chains either snap into heavy collars on the neck or encircle the neck and snap into a link.

36 Physical Barriers Shields; Head screen; Blankets; Bales of hay or straw; Wire panels or solid gates; and Opaque plastic sheets.

37 Physical Barriers Shields: Shields are an important tool of restraint which could be made of plywood with handles or plastic shields which could allow the handler to still see the animal. Head screen: Head screens offer protection from extremely agile potentially aggressive animals & are especially useful for horns, cranes and primates. Blankets: A blanket can be used to shield the animals from seeing the handler or a mattress could be used to fix an animal in one position or against a wall.

38 Physical Barriers Bales of hay or stray: Bales of hay can be used as a physical barrier for working on or around animals. Wire panels of solid gates: Wire panels or gates can be used to squeeze animals against walls or surfaces. Its important to ensure a leg doesnt poke through mesh or slats of panels since fractures can occur. Opaque plastic sheets: Opaque plastic sheeting is excellent to direct animals in a certain direction & is ideal for moving hoofed animals into crates or chutes.

39 Physical Force Protect hands (gloves): Gloves can vary from very thin cotton for protection from small rodents to double layer course leather for handling primates. Leather welders gloves are excellent for general use but do not protect against bone crushing. The hands are used in most manipulative procedures & the wise restrainer must take every precaution to protect them. Correct pressure applied (animal size): Its important to know the best place to grab the animal and how much pressure is required to restrain without injuring the animal.

40 Physical Force Tools: broom, pole, bar, etc; Other tools used to encourage movement may be a rolled up news paper, scoop shovel, house broom. To restrict animals in cages, poles or bars could be used to keep the head down during an injection. Carbon dioxide charged extinguisher; CO2 charged fire extinguishers have been utilized to encourage or frighten animals to move out of a den or into another enclosure.

41 Chemical restraint The use of drugs for restraint and immobilization has become routine for practicing veterinarians and wildlife biologists. Hand-held or pole syringes, projected syringes or darts, blowgun and crossbow are examples of equipment used for immobilization of animals.

42 Special Techniques Slings: Slings are not necessarily a restraint tool but are used for proper care of animals unable to maintain an upright position due to injury. Rope Sling: Rope slings can be adapted to most large animals & the rope should vary in relation to the animal size to avoid injury. Speculums: A speculum is used to hold the mouth open for oral-exam or gastric intubation.

43 DOGS Danger: The dogs only weapons are its large canine teeth and to a lesser extent the toenails. Every precaution should be taken to prevent injury. Approach any strange dog with caution.

44 DOGS Behavioural characteristics: The behaviour of dogs is determined by breed, training, previous disagreeable experiences, and degree of human association.

45 DOGS Stray or free roaming dog that has little association with people except, perhaps, when fed must be handled carefully because they could bite at the slightest provocation. Pet dogs and working dogs are usually docile and respond well to a low soothing voice and deliberate handling but rough handling may provoke attack.

46 DOGS Extremely nervous or frightened dogs can be recognized by anxious expression, rapid movements of the head, constant prickling of the ears in response to every sound or movement. The head will be likely ducked and the animal may cower in a corner. They can be boisterous and attempt to nip at the handler. Above all, they can be expected to bite at almost any type of approach.

47 DOGS The vicious, aggressive dog has the head held low & generally wont look directly at you but can attack without warning. Many of these dogs are large, are capable of inflicting serious injury, and will bite with little or no provocation.

48 DOGS It should be recognized that the temperament of a sick or injured dog can change drastically and when it is sick or injured. Such a dog is far more apt to bite than a healthy dog.

49 DOGS Physical restraint: –Leash is an important device to control a dog. Leather and chain leashes used by owners when they walk their dogs are rarely suitable for restraint. –Snare is used for vicious dogs to keep the dog at a safe distance from the handler.

50 Carnivores Danger Potential: Teeth specialized for grasping and tearing prey are characteristic for all carnivores. The jaw muscles are well developed and very strong (a hyena is capable of crushing a tibia in one snap). The paws of most members of this order are fitted with claws that can rip and tear. All felids have dangerous claws. These animals are also very agile, fast and can lash out with their claws much faster than you can move.

51 Carnivores Canidae (dog, fox, wolf): Equipment that should be used include gloves, snares, squeeze cages, a rope & muzzle. Ursidae (bears): Bears have tremendous strength & their claws & paw power make them very dangerous to handle. Chemicals must be used to sedate adults but cubs can be handled using nets or snares. Procyonidae (racoons): Racoons are small to medium sized animals which are usually easily handled with nets or squeeze cages.

52 Carnivores Mustelidae (skunk, weasel, otter): These are small to medium sized agile carnivores with needle sharp teeth which are dangerous to handle. They are usually handled with nets, snares or squeeze cages. (Skunks easily bite and are a common carrier of rabies). When threatened it faces away with its hind quarters and tail up and it usually stamps its front paws before spraying.

53 Carnivores Felidae (cats): The cat family varies in size from small house cats to 340 kg Siberian tigers. All cats have sharpened recurved claws that lacerate flesh. They are extremely fast striking with their paws. Obviously restraint techniques must obviously vary with the size. Small cats should be caught using a snare.

54 Snakes Danger potential: All snakes can bite. Venomous species require special handling techniques as they may inflict serious injury or death. Snake hooks are fundamental tools for working with snakes. It is important to know that the degree of agitation and aggressiveness is less in cooler temperatures.

55 Snakes Non-poisonous snakes: They will not bite unless tormented. The head of non poisonous snakes must be controlled when handling. By supporting the body, it will prevent the snake from becoming restless. Be cautious dealing with large constrictors, never allow them to loop around the neck or body as they will try to suffocate the handler. They will feel comfortable if it coils once around an arm.

56 Snakes Non-poisonous snakes contd: Some agile non-poisonous snakes are difficult to handle. The experienced handler can grab them quickly but more suitable tools like a snake hook or noose may be used for directing movement, lifting snakes from containers, and a variety of other restraint procedures. The hook may be used to pin the head of any snake to the ground, allowing the handler to safely grasp it. Only sufficient pressure to hold the snake should be exerted; too much pressure on the neck may seriously injure the spine or dislocate the head.

57 Snakes Poisonous snakes: Each species has different characteristics, degree of agility and method of striking but all have sacs which the venom is extruded into fangs for envenomation of prey species or enemies. Each species requires the development of specialized restraint and handling techniques. No one should handle venomous snakes until they first develop expertise and confidence by practicing the techniques on non-poisonous snakes.

58 Snakes Poisonous snakes contd: Vipers and pit vipers are usually phlegmatic heavy bodied and usually slow to rouse into action. They position themselves in undulating folds and can strike a distance about two thirds their body length. Tools such as a snake noose or snake hook are helpful for pinning the head down. They can be manipulated into a plastic tube with holes that can be capped. Squeeze boxes are more suitable for large snakes. A versatile squeeze cage can be constructed with a removable top & slotted sides. The snake is then hooked, lifted into the box and can be squeezed with a screen to conduct procedures.

59 Snakes Poisonous snakes contd: Cobras are more aggressive and have more toxic venom, are flightier in temperament than vipers and consequently more dangerous to manipulate. The cobras defensive posture is to raise the body to a vertical position with hood up. They strike forward and downward from that position. Some species are capable of ejecting venom from the fangs at the eyes of the handlers, temporarily or permanently blinding the victim. therefore a face shield should always be worn.




63 EO Conduct Animal Control and Handling The handling of spiders, scorpions and centipedes will be taught at the zoo.


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