Essay On Domestic Animals

skip to main | skip to sidebar

Short Essay on 'Domestic Animals' (160 Words)

Short Essay on 'Domestic Animals' (160 Words)
The 'Domestic Animals' are the animals that have been tamed and kept by humans as a work animal, food source or pet. There are different kinds of domestic animals. Cow, buffalo, sheep, goat, dog, cat, elephant, horse, camel, cock, hen, parrot, pigeon are some example of domestic animals.

Domestic Animals are very useful to man. Cow gives us milk. bullocks help the farmers in farming. Furs of sheep are very soft and long. These furs are sheared and made into wool. We get milk from the she-goats. Dogs are very faithful animals and they watch our houses. Elephants are used to carry heavy logs of wood. Horses are used to ride. Camels are used in deserts. The parrot is a talking bird. Most of the domestic animals are greatly devoted to their masters. Our domestic animals are quite friendly to us. They do very useful jobs for our benefit. Hence, we should treat them with all kindness. 

Domestic animals or livestock is the backbone of Indian agriculture. Cattle, sheep, pigs, camels and horses constitute the livestock wealth of our country.

Bullocks, camels and horses provide the power for cultivation and transportation. Buffaloes and cows provide milk. Sheep and goat provide wool, leather and meat.

Pigs are a source of animal proteins. Droppings from cattle form a good manure used for maintaining soil fertility. Cow dung is often used as fuel. The hides of cattle are used in the leather industry.

India is an agricultural country and livestock plays an important role in its economy. If our agricultural produce is to be improved, the condition of our livestock must be improved. The science of breeding and caring for livestock is called Animal husbandry.

1. Cattle:

Cattle usually refer to cows, bulls and calves. Their scientific name is Bos indicus it comes under the family Bovidae, order Artiodactyla and class Mammalia. Cattle play a very important role in rural economy. Bullock is one of the most important farm animals. It helps in ploughing agricultural fields, thrashing and harvesting of agricultural produce. Bullock cart is the usual mode of transportation in the rural areas even today.

Cows are the primary consumers. They feed on farm crops and agricultural wastes and provides milk and milk products which are a source of animal proteins to man. Cattle are a source of meat and hides. Maintenance of cattle requires man power, thus, it provides employment opportunities.

On the basis of their utility, the breeds of cattle are classified into 3 groups:

(i) Milch breeds,

(ii) Drought breeds, and

(iii) General utility breeds.

There are some high milk yielding imported breeds of cattle. They are called as exotic breeds.

The following are some exotic breeds of importance:

(i) Holstein-Friesian:

It is a native cow of Holland. It is generally white or black in colour and yields upto 7000 litres of milk per lactation. It is preferred in dairying.

(ii) Jersy:

It is a native cow of Jersy Island, it is small and black, red or white spotted in colour. Each cow yields about 4500 litres of milk per lactation.

(iii) Red-Dane:

This is a cross-breed of Denmark. It is red in colour and yields about 6000 litres of milk per lactation.


Mating of animals belonging to different breeds is called cross breeding. Cross-breeding is done to develop breeds of cattle with desirable characters superior to that of the parents. Cross-breeding of dairy animals is carried out to increase the capacity of production of milk. Indian cows have been cross-bred with exotic breeds to increase milk production.

Two good varieties of cows have been developed by such cross-breeding. They are Karanswiss at the National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal and Sunandhini at the National Dairy Research Institute, Kerala. Considerable cross-breeding have been carried out using imported bulls during the last 50 years.

The Indian Sindhi cattle has been cross bred with the exotic european breeds like Holstein Friesian and Jersy. The progeny of these crosses have a better milk yielding capacity than their parents.

Advantages of cross-bred cattle:

1. Calves grow faster, attain maturity quite early and reproduce in about 2 years.

2. Breeding period lasts for more than 10 months and reproduce regularly once in 15 to 20 months. Give birth to 8 calves during their life span.

3. Lactation period lasts for more than 10 months. Some breeds yield upto 4300 kg of milk per year.

4. More resistant to diseases.

Artificial insemination:

It is a method by which semen (fluid carrying spermatozoa) is at first collected from a known bull and then the semen in required quantity is introduced mechanically into the reproductive tract of the cow. In this method, the semen obtained from a single ejaculation (emission of semen) of a bull can be used to inseminate as many as 550 cows.

Recent techniques are now available to freeze and store the semen of cattle which could be used when there is a need. The frozen semen could be stored over 20 years at a temperature between – 79°C and – 196°C. Such frozen semen could be used to inseminate the cows all over the country as and when required.


1. In artificial insemination healthy and superior variety of bulls can be used to inseminate a number of cows.

2. Collected semen can be transported in vials {- small medicine bottle) to distant places and used. Hence, there is no need to transport the bulls for the purpose of insemination.

3. Collected semen in vials is always available but not the required bulls needed for insemination.


It is a technique by which gonadotropic hormone is injected into the female body and forcing the female to ovulate large number of ova. This technique is in use for cows. A selected high milk yielding donor cow is injected with the gonadotropic hormones to induce superovulation and the ova are fertilized by artificial insemination. The fertilized ova are then used for transplantation.

Embryo transplantation:

Embryo transplantation technique is being used to increase fertility in cattle. This technique involves transfer of embryo from a donor cow into the uterus of a carrier cow or surrogate cow for further development and birth. For this purpose, a high milk-yielding cow is given hormonal injections to induce superovulation.

Then, the cow is inseminated with the semen of a selected good quality bull to fertilize the superovulated ova. The developing embryos are collected from this cow and transplanted into surrogate cows for further development and finally giving birth to calf. It is now possible to deep freeze (- 196°C) the young embryos and store them for several years. They could be used when needed.

Invitro Fertilization and Embryo Transfer Technique:

In vitro fertilization and embryo transfer (IVF-HI) technique was initially developed for the production of human test tube babies. This technique has been now adopted for the cattle also. By using this technique, hundreds of ova collected from selected donor cows ai e fertilized in the laboratory by frozen sperms of good variety bulls.

2. Indian Buffaloes:

The scientific name of Indian buffalo is Bubalus bubalis. It is also commonly called as water buffalo. It is a subgenes of genus Bos to which cattle belongs under family Bovidae, order Artiodactyla and class Mammalia. In terms of number, the buffaloes constitute about one third of total cattle number in India. But buffaloes produce almost three times more milk than the cows and contain 50% more fat.

The average milk production from one buffalo is about 1020 kg per year as against 220 kg per year by a cow. Buffaloes possess a greater resistance to diseases and have a long life span. Buffalo hide is an important raw material for the leather industry. The outer skin of buffalo hide is about 3 to 5 times stronger than that of cattle hide.

Among the seven breeds, the best known breeds of Indian buffaloes are the Murrah, Jaffabadi, Bhadawari and Surti. While the milk breeds are found in Punjab, Rajasthan and Gujarat, draught breeds are mainly confined to Central and South India.

The uterine and ovarian cycle of the buffalo is 21 days. The duration of heat is usually 11 days. The female buffaloes show sign of heat at night, attains maximum at mid night. The oestrous symptoms become very weak during the hot dry months (April to June) and are known as silent-heat. The length of gestation or baby carrying period of buffaloes varies between 276 and; 340 days, but on an average it lasts for 307 days or 10 months.

In India the breeding season starts from September and continues upto February and calving season (giving birth to calf) from July to November. During breeding season the bulls become very active sexually and female buffaloes show maximum ovarian activity. Improved breed of buffaloes are being produced by Artificial insemination in numerous A.I. stations in India.

In milch buffaloes, the lactation period is about 281 days. Calf mortality in buffaloes generally occurs during autumn and winter months before the age of 3 months. The death occurs due to diseases like pneumonia, enteritis, hepatitis, ascariasis and bloat. The calves also suffer from diarrhoea, dysentery etc.

The buffaloes have lower heat tolerance. For this reason they dip themselves in water to cool their body during summer. Buffaloes consume large quantity of coarse fodder which are not readily eaten by cattle.

3. Sheep (Ovis Aries) and Goats (Capra Hircus):

According to live stock census, India has more than 41 million sheep and more than 80 million goats. Sheep .are reared for wool, skin and meat. Goats are reared for milk, meat, skin and wool. Droppings of sheep and goats are a valuable source of manure. In India, the wool yielding sheep are primarily concentrated in dry part of Rajasthan, Kutch, Saurashtra and North Gujarat.

Sheep having superior wool-type are raised in Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, hilly districts of Uttar Pradesh, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh. The main goat raising states of our country are Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Karnataka, M.P., Maharashtra, Orissa, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, U.P. and West Bengal.

For breeding it is essential to select ewes (female sheep) and ram (male sheep) or goats which are found most suitable for local conditions. Different breeds are known for quality of wool and mutton or meat yield. Improvement of local breeds with respect to the quality and quantity of wool can be achieved through cross-breeding with exotic breeds (high yielding imported breed) of sheep like Dorset Horn, Suffolk Correidale or Merino.

Sheep are economical converter of grass into meat and wool. Unlike goats, they hardly damage tree. Sheep dung is a valuable fertiliser. Since they feed on different kinds of plants, they are considered as important weed destroyer. Sheep farming is not a costly affair as it does not require expensive building and maintenance.

4. Pigs (Sus scrofa):

Pigs constitute one of the most useful domestic animals of man. Pig meat is called pork. It is comparatively cheaper and is mostly taken by the poor. Pig hide is used as leather and its bristles are used for making brushes. The fat obtained from the pig is used for soap manufacture. Pig dropping (faecal matter) is a good source of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium for agriculture.

From the pig meat or pork ham, bacon and sausages are prepared. The management of pig is called piggery. Pigs feed on garbage, kitchen waste, vegetables and human excreta. In India, pig rearing and pork production are the primitive practices. However, pig rearing is almost entirely in the hands of poor people who follow old methods. For this reason, the country pigs are mostly neglected and do not grow into an economic group of animals.

5. Horses, Donkeys and Mules:

Horses, donkeys and mules are the beasts of burden and therefore, they are used for transporting man and materials.

Horses (Equus equus):

Horses are one of the most useful and faithful pet of man. They are intelligent and fast learners who can adapt to all sorts of climatic conditions. Horses are the main source of transport at high altitudes, used by civilians, police and army. Because the horses run fast and have great stamina, they are reared for racing and polo.

There are six important Indian breeds of horses are given below:

In comparison to other animals, horses have a low reproductive rate. They are more difficult to breed and have a long gestation period. Horse-breeding by controlled natural mating has been in practice for long time in our country. Rearing, training and medical care of race and polo-horses needs high professional skills.

6. Donkeys (Equus Asinus):

Donkeys are very similar to horses but have smaller and stouter body. They are the most simple and unselfish animal. They can withstand adverse weather conditions and can work continuously without rest. There are two types of donkeys in India—small grey and large white. The large white is also called wild ass and occurs in Rann of Kutch.


A mule is a hybrid of male donkey (called jack) and a female horse (called mare). The hybrid from a female donkey and a male horse is called hinny. Mules are sterile i.e. they are unable to produce young ones. Mules show hybrid vigour (they are larger than a donkey and sturdier than a horse).

7. Camels (Camelus):

Camels are large and strong animals found in arid (= dry) condition. They can travel long distances in extreme hot, dry deserts with little food and water. For this reason, they are rightly called as the ship of the desert. Camels walk easily on sand and can carry heavy loads to places where there are no roads.

They have adapted very well to desert life in following manner:

1. They can walk in the desert without food and water continuously for 10 to 12 days.

2. Long neck and thick foot pads help them to walk easily on loose hot sand.

3. They can live on thorny shrubs.

4. Thick skin over their body prevents water loss.

5. Their eyes and nostrils have special structures which prevent the entry of sand particles into their structures.

6. The hump present on camel’s back is filled with adipose tissue (= fat). It supplies energy to the animal under starvation.

7. Their breathing rate is very slow. Hence, less water evaporation occurs through expiration. They pass out less than half a litre of urine in a day (water conservation measures).

There are two species of camels. The Bacterian Camel (Camelus bactrianus) and Arabian or Dromedary Camel (Camelus dromidarus) (Fig. 7.5). The Bactrian camel has two humps whereas the Arabian camel has only one hump. In India only Arabian camels are found. Some Indian breeds of camels are Jaisalmeri, Sindhi and Bikaneri found in Rajasthan and Gujarat. The breeding season lasts for 5 months from November to March.

8. Elephants (Elephas):

Elephants are the largest land animal. They are found in forests with tall trees where bamboos grow in large number. The elephants are herbivorous and voracious feeder. The Indian elephant is Elephas maximus. Elephant gets sexual maturity between the age of 8 to 12 years. Their gestation period is longest (22 months). They live up to 90 years of age. The African elephant Loxodonta africana is more strongly built than the Indian elephant with large ears and tusks.

0 thoughts on “Essay On Domestic Animals”


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *