Ovine locomotion studies are rare, despite their relevance for medical research. The aim of this preliminary study was to investigate habituation and temporospatial parameters during treadmill walking of seven Austrian Mountain sheep. Sheep were naïve to treadmill exercise. During five treadmill sessions, movement cycle duration (MCD), vertical trunk movement (VTM), stride height (SH), stride length (SL), and percentage of movement cycle at stance (%St) were assessed. Two sheep were excluded from the study because they would not walk on the treadmill. From the end measurement session, MCD (0.95 s) and %St (62%) were similar to reported kinetics of sheep walking over ground, although stride length (1.05 m) was longer in this study. These findings suggest that sheep may require more than five sessions to become habituated to treadmill walking.
The Veterinary Journal