Beef Magazine is part of the Informa Markets Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Cattle Handling Safety

People working with cattle can underestimate the power that cattle have, fail to use common sense and make themselves subject to injury, says Kerri Ebert, Kansas State University Research and Extension assistant for biological and agricultural engineering.

Avoid making quick movements or loud noises, cattle may perceive the signals as a predatory strike. The last thing that a good handler would want to do is unknowingly send threatening signals to the cattle.

Maintaining facilities is an important factor in injury prevention. Just like a person needs to have an understanding of cattle behavior, they also need to understand how the facilities and chutes operate and where the safety gates are located.

If cattle aren't moving properly, paddles and flags can be used to guide them in the right direction. Electric prods can be used as a last resort, but need to be used appropriately at the rear of the animal and only for a moment, then released.

If possible keep dogs out of working facilities. You want cattle quiet in the facilities and dogs could frighten them. Also, the dog's safety could be at risk when it’s in a situation that it can't escape from.