Analysis of Survival of Sahiwal Cattle at the National Sahiwal Study
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The overall objective of this study will be to determine the longevity or the productive life of the Sahiwal cattle. Production conditions in the tropics are normally strenuous thus herd health and adaptability are of great concern especially with persistent exposure to multiple stresses of low quality and quantity feeding, heat stress, high disease and parasitic incidences. This study aims to apply survival analysis in the determination of longevity of the Sahiwal cattle. It will also review the factors influencing the risk of culling and the general productivity of the Sahiwal cattle. Of great importance also will be the survival rate prior to first calving and subsequent calving. Data on various traits that express survival and performance will be obtained from the National Sahiwal Stud in Naivasha. Using statistical models such as survival function, hazard function and the Cox or Weibull proportional models it will be possible to determine the longevity of the Sahiwal cattle having taken into account the variables that affect survival such as herd, year,season of calving and parity. Few studies have been done on survival analysis for dual-purpose
cattle breeds like the Sahiwal. Most studies have been limited to dairy and beef cattle. If ever the true potential of some of these dual purpose cattle is to be fully understood then survival analysis has to be done on these breeds. The length of the productive life of an animal will affect its profitability as well as its production efficiency through increased proportion of high yielding cows, decreased replacement cost and more opportunity for voluntary culling.