Livestock animals are of great importance to the welfare of man all over the globe. They are raised and kept on for various reasons. An essential purpose of having livestock is food production and supply. The most important food products used as food for man are as follows:
This is the flesh, muscle, or flesh and the associated fat, connective tissue of slaughtered animals e.g. pork, mutton, beef, chevon etc. Meat is a very good source of animal protein in the diet of man. Moreover, animal protein is necessary for metabolic process in the body.
Milk is a white creamy coloured secretion from the mammary glands of female animals, and it is produced after parturition ( an act of giving birth). This is also a very valuable source of animal protein. Cow, Buffalo, Sheep, and Goats are a good source of milk.
Poultry eggs are products gotten from laying chickens and they are taken by man. Fortunately, it is also a good source of protein too.
Other products gotten from livestock animals are:
- Hides and Skin; for leather industries and they are also edible
- Chemical or liquid extractions form internal organs of animals; these are used in the pharmaceutical industries to manufacture hormones, medicines, and other kinds of drugs
- Animal fats; it is used for soap production; lubricating oil, and drug synthesis
- Horns and hooves; used in the industry to produce gelatin, buttons, glues, buttons, and some other items
- Manures; these are the droppings from animals and they can be used as fertilizers by farmers or for methane gas production
Intangible benefits of keeping livestock are:
- Companionship; animals can serve as a companion to man
- Income generation; we have people who raise animals to sell when matured
- Some can be used as draught animals in carrying out farm operations such as ploughing and harrowing while they can be used for house chores. Animals in this category are Cattle, Oxen, Horse, Donkey, and dog
- Some animals can be used as beast of burden to help in carrying heavy loads
- Some animals are natural weeders around our home.