Karen S. Schwartzkopf-Genswein, Ph. D.

Image Karen Schwartzkopf-Genswein
Senior Research Scientist

Beef Cattle Physiology and Welfare

Current research and/or projects

Current Research

Project Lead
Incidence and characterization of feedlot lambs and ewe flock lameness in Alberta. Total Funds: $214,409

Identification of treatment strategies for the most common causes of lameness in feedlot cattle. Total Funds: $470,014

Effect of rest stop duration and quality of the welfare of cattle transported by road. Total Funds: $879,188

Project Co-Lead
Determining the effect of stress on the respiratory microbiome of cattle during transportation. Total Funds: $79,480 (T.Alexander Co-Lead; AAFC)

Project Collaborator
Circulating microRNA as biomarkers for diagnosis and prognosis in feedlot cattle lameness $367,600 (L. Guan Lead; U of A)

Characterization and optimization of visual pen checking criteria to improve BRD treatment outcomes in feedlot cattle $183,996 (D. Moya Lead; U of S)

Further strategies to enhance the use of wheat in feedlot diets $475,502 (T. McAllister Lead; AAFC)

Simple strategies to reduce impacts of ergot alkaloids on beef cattle $394,745 (K. Stanford Lead; Alberta Agriculture and Forestry)

Effect of feeding ergot alkaloids on ruminal metabolism, growth performance, health and welfare of beef cattle: How much is too much? $565,640 (G. Ribeiro Lead; U of S)

Professional activities / interests

Associations and Certifications

  • Member of Canadian Society of Animal Science

  • Member of American Society of Animal Science

  • Certified PACCO Auditor for Meat Slaughter Plants

  • Certified PACCO Auditor for National Cattle Feeders Association Animal Care Assessment Program


Invited Member

  • Technical Advisory Committee of the Alberta Beef Producers

  • BC SPCA Species Advisory Committee

  • Technical Advisor for the Canadian Beef Export Federation

  • North American Food Animal Well-being Commission- Beef (Founded at the University of Kansas, Manhattan, KS).

  • Technical Advisor to the Canadian Cattle Feeders Association

  • Panel Member for Canadian Council on Animal Care

  • Canadian Round Table for Sustainable Beef (CRSB) Science Advisory Committee

  • Advisory Board Member for the Olds College Center of Innovation (TAC), Olds, AB.

  • Subcommittee member for the Canadian Council on Animal Care tasked with drafting “Guidelines for Choosing an Appropriate Endpoint for Animals in Research”

  • Canadian National Cattle Feeders Association Feedlot Animal Care Advisory Committee.

  • Chair of Scientist Committee for Canadian Transportation Codes of Practice - Cattle.

  • Member of the Code Development Subcommittee for the Canadian Transportation Codes of Practice (Represent Scientist Committee).

  • Technical Committee Member for Verified Beef Production + Program for the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association.

  • Ethics Committee for Genome Alberta.

  • Chair of the Livestock Users Committee at the AAFC Lethbridge Research and Development Center.

Education and awards


1996     University of Saskatchewan
PhD in Physiology and Applied Animal Ethology
1990     University of Regina
MSc in Biology
1986     University of Lethbridge
BSc in Science


2013    Recipient of the Award of Distinction for Innovation by The Alberta Farm Animal Care Association
2015    Recipient of the Canadian Society of Animal Science Award for Extension
2017    Recipient of the Canadian Society of Animal Science Award for the Innovation for Safe and Affordable Food
2017    Recipient of the Canadian Beef Industry Award for Outstanding Research and Innovation awarded by the Beef Cattle Research Council-            division of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association


International experience and/or work

Invited symposium speaker, lecturer, research collaboration and expert committee member regarding beef cattle welfare at numerous international events including Brazil, China, United States, Spain, Italy, Germany, Australia, and South Africa.

Key publications

  1. L. Faucitano (ed.) – Preslaughter handling and slaughter of meet animals
    DOI 10.3920/978-90-8686-924-4_2, © Wageningen Academic Publishers 2022

    2022 - View publication details

  2. Weersink, A., von Massow, M., Bannon, N., Ifft, J., Maples, J., McEwan, K., McKendree, M.G.S., Nicholson, C., Novakovic, A., Rangarajan, A., Richards, T., Rickard, B., Rude, J., Schipanski, M., Schnitkey, G., Schulz, L., Schuurman, D., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K., Stephenson, M., Thompson, J., Wood, K. (2021). COVID-19 and the agri-food system in the United States and Canada. Agricultural Systems, [online] 188 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.agsy.2020.103039

    2021 - View publication details

  3. Meléndez, D.M., Marti, S., Haley, D.B., Schwinghamer, T.D., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S. (2021). Effects of conditioning, source, and rest on indicators of stress in beef cattle transported by road. PLoS ONE, [online] 16(1 January 2021), http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0244854

    2021 - View publication details

  4. Assessment of the Diagnostic Sensitivity and
    Specificity of Pain Biomarkers in Cattle Using
    Receiver Operating Characteristic Curves.
    Miriam S. Martin1, Michael Kleinhenz1,
    Karen Schwartzkopf-Genswein2, Johann
    Coetzee1, 1Kansas State University College of
    Veterinary Medicine, 2Agriculture and Agri-Food
    Canada, Lethbridge Research Centre

    2020 - View publication details

  5. Daniela M Meléndez, Sonia Marti, Luigi Faucitano, Derek B Haley, Timothy D Schwinghamer ...
    Journal of Animal Science, Volume 98, Issue Supplement_4, November 2020, Pages 296–297, https://doi.org/10.1093/jas/skaa278.535

    2020 - View publication details

  6. Conference proceedings

    2020 - View publication details

  7. https://wcds.ualberta.ca/wp-content/uploads/sites/57/2020/03/p107-118-Schwartzkopf-Genswein-WCDS2020-TransportingCattleIn2020.pdf

    2020 - View publication details

  8. Lauder, J.K., Marti, S., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S., Jelinski, M.D., Janzen, E.D. (2020). Measuring behavioral and physiological responses to pain mitigation for ovariectomy in Bos taurus yearling beef heifers. Journal of Animal Science, [online] 98(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jas/skz386

    2020 - View publication details

  9. Gellatly, D., Cyrillo, J.N.S.G., Sant'anna, A.C., Valente, T.S., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K., Da Costa, M.J.R.P. (2020). Flight speed as an indicator of Zebu cattle growth performance and suitability to the feedlot environment. Animal Production Science, [online] 60(4), 560-566. http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/AN18785

    2020 - View publication details

  10. Meléndez, D.M., Marti, S., Haley, D.B., Schwinghamer, T.D., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S. (2020). Effect of transport and rest stop duration on the welfare of conditioned cattle transported by road. PLoS ONE, [online] 15(3), http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0228492

    2020 - View publication details

  11. Nordi, W.M., Marti, S., Gellatly, D., Meléndez, D.M., González, L.A., McAllister, T.A., Fierheller, E.E., Caulkett, N.A., Janzen, E., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S. (2019). Effect of preemptive flunixin meglumine and lidocaine on behavioral and physiological indicators of pain post-band and knife castration in 6-mo-old beef calves. Livestock Science, [online] 230 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.livsci.2019.103838

    2019 - View publication details

  12. Meléndez, D.M., Marti, S., Pajor, E.A., Sidhu, P.K., Gellatly, D., Janzen, E.D., Schwinghamer, T.D., Coetzee, J.F., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S. (2019). Pharmacokinetics of oral and subcutaneous meloxicam: Effect on indicators of pain and inflammation after knife castration in weaned beef calves. PLoS ONE, [online] 14(5), http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0217518

    2019 - View publication details

  13. Paddick, K.S., DeVries, T.J., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K., Steele, M.A., Walpole, M.E., Penner, G.B. (2019). Effect of the amount of concentrate offered in an automated milking system on dry matter intake, milk yield, milk composition, ruminal digestion, and behavior of primiparous Holstein cows fed isocaloric diets. Journal of Dairy Science (JDS), [online] 102(3), 2173-2187. http://dx.doi.org/10.3168/jds.2018-15138

    2019 - View publication details

  14. Davis-Unger, J., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S.G., Pajor, E.A., Hendrick, S., Marti, S., Dorin, C., Orsel, K. (2019). Prevalence and lameness-associated risk factors in Alberta feedlot cattle. Translational Animal Science, [online] 3(2), 595-606. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/tas/txz008

    2019 - View publication details

  15. Marti, S., Meléndez, D.M., Pajor, E.A., Moya, D., Gellatly, D., Janzen, E.D., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S. (2019). Effect of a single dose of subcutaneous meloxicam before knife castration alone or combined with hot-iron branding on scrotal healing, inflammatory response, and behaviour in 2-mo-old beef calves over 42 d post procedure. Canadian Journal of Animal Science, [online] 99(1), 179-190. http://dx.doi.org/10.1139/cjas-2018-0016

    2019 - View publication details

  16. Meléndez, D.M., Marti, S., Pajor, E.A., Sidhu, P.K., Gellatly, D., Moya, D., Janzen, E.D., Coetzee, J.F., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S. (2018). Effect of meloxicam and lidocaine administered alone or in combination on indicators of pain and distress during and after knife castration in weaned beef calves. PLoS ONE, [online] 13(11), http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0207289

    2018 - View publication details

  17. Menajovsky, S.B., Walpole, C.E., DeVries, T.J., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S., Walpole, M.E., Penner, G.B. (2018). The effect of the forage-to-concentrate ratio of the partial mixed ration and the quantity of concentrate in an automatic milking system for lactating Holstein cows. Journal of Dairy Science (JDS), [online] 101(11), 9941-9953. http://dx.doi.org/10.3168/jds.2018-14665

    2018 - View publication details

  18. Jelinski, M., Marti, S., Janzen, E., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K. (2018). A longitudinal investigation of an outbreak of toe tip necrosis syndrome in western canadian feedlot cattle. Canadian Veterinary Journal, [online] 59(11), 1202-1208. http://dx.doi.org/null

    2018 - View publication details

  19. Marti, S., Meléndez, D.M., Pajor, E.A., Moya, D., Gellatly, D., Janzen, E.D., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S. (2018). Effect of a single dose of subcutaneous meloxicam prior to band or knife castration in 1-wk-old beef calves: II. Inflammatory response and healing. Journal of Animal Science, [online] 96(10), 4136-4148. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jas/sky291

    2018 - View publication details

  20. Meléndez, D.M., Marti, S., Pajor, E.A., Moya, D., Gellatly, D., Janzen, E.D., Schwartzkopf-Genswein, K.S. (2018). Effect of subcutaneous meloxicam on indicators of acute pain and distress after castration and branding in 2-mo-old beef calves. Journal of Animal Science, [online] 96(9), 3606-3621. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jas/sky245

    2018 - View publication details

Research facility

5403 1st Avenue South
Lethbridge, AB T1J 4B1



2004-present                        Adjunct Status at University of Saskatchewan

2010-present                        Adjunct Status at University of Calgary

2010-present                        Adjunct Status at UNESP University, Jaboticabal, Brazil

2012-present                        Adjunct Status at University of Manitoba

2019-present                        Adjunct Status at University of Guelph