A survey of farmers' attitudes to services provided by consulting veterinarians to the Western Australian sheep industry
Chapman, H.M., Copland, R.S., Swan, R.A. and Robertson, I.D. (1991) A survey of farmers' attitudes to services provided by consulting veterinarians to the Western Australian sheep industry. Australian Veterinary Journal, 68 (6). pp. 196-198.
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A postal survey was conducted of 80 sheep farmers in the Kojonup and Esperance districts of Western Australia to establish what they wanted from a veterinary service. Twenty five of the farmers surveyed used a sheep consultant, 25 did not, and 30 were interested in employing one. Farmers were asked questions about themselves and their attitudes to private veterinarians who provide specialist services to sheep farmers. Data reported here showed that farmers wanted a veterinarian who lived in the district, was well trained in sheep management and production, was enthusiastic and had good communication skills. The service provided should be whole-farm and available to members of the consultant's group only. Regular newsletters and field days were necessary, but the provision of contract services, such as mulesing, lamb-marking, drenching, pregnancy testing and sheep classing, and 'fire-brigade' services for sick animals, were not rated as important. Most farmers were unwilling or unable to give a dollar value for the likely benefits of a consultancy service. Non-financial benefits included keeping farmers up to date with new technical developments and information. The survey also showed that a veterinarian specialising in services to sheep farmers could be confident of employment.
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|Murdoch Affiliation:||School of Veterinary Studies|
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