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Can J Vet Res. 2008 Jan;72(1):50-5.

Temporospatial and kinetic characteristics of sheep walking on a pressure sensing walkway.

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  • 1Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, Purdue University, 625 Harrison Street, West Lafayette, Indiana 47907, USA. kim200@purdue.edu


The walking gait of sheep was analyzed in terms of temporospatial and kinetic parameters and weight distribution among the 4 limbs. Eighteen mature female Suffolk-mix sheep walked comfortably with a halter-guide over a 1.5-m pressure sensing walkway. Six valid trials were acquired for each sheep without any previous selection or habituation. Stance phases of the forelimb and hind limb were 66.3% and 68.9%, respectively, of total gait cycle, and limb velocity was 1.06 m/s in both forelimbs and hind limbs while walking. The mean peak vertical force (PVF) and vertical impulse (VI) as percentage of body weight in the forelimbs were 52.5% and 19.9%, respectively, and those of the hind limbs were 38.5% and 14.9%, respectively. More body weight was loaded on the forelimbs than the hind limbs, at 59% and 41% of body weight, respectively. The walking gait of sheep measured with the pressure sensing (PS) walkway was similar to that reported in dogs and horses. The PS walkway enabled collection of temporospatial and kinetic data, and simplified the process of data collection.

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