The cattle hoof treatment machine is a device in the form of a metal frame or box with a mechanism that limits the activity of the animal. A factory-made product is expensive. In order to save money, breeders make splits themselves. The machines are used not only for hoof processing. The device helps to carry out examinations, treatment of cows.
What are the machines for fixing cattle
Cattle machines from different manufacturers differ in design features. Regardless of the manufacturing technology used, all splits function according to the same principle, they are placed inside the barn. Hoof trimmers are:
- electrically operated front and rear legs;
The latter option is convenient in terms of movement. The machine is easy to roll due to the presence of powerful wheels.
Almost all factory-made machines are rectangular structures made of metal frames. Approximate dimensions:
- length - 2.5 m;
- width - 1.1 m;
- height - 2 m.
A device for processing hooves is made of metal. The protective coating is a galvanized layer or paint. The machine has no sharp corners, protrusions that can injure the animal during the procedure. The fixing mechanism is chains with leather straps.
Learn more about the machines in the video
Pros and cons of cattle hoof machines
According to the rules of cattle veterinary medicine, hoof treatment is a mandatory measure aimed at improving animal health. It is impossible to carry out the procedure without machines, and this is their main advantage. Other advantages include:
- most of the machines are compact, with transport wheels;
- convenient fixation mechanism does not squeeze the internal organs of the animal during hoof trimming;
- splitting simplifies the procedure without exposing the cow to stress, protects the operator from hoof impact;
- machines help to perform other veterinary activities: trimming horns, examinations, medical care;
- the split allows one person to perform the hoof trimming procedure;
- up to 100 animals can be served on one machine per day.
Disadvantages are observed in the design of some models:
- a slight split with poor support is unstable; during trimming, the hooves may tip over, which will result in injury to the cow and the operator;
- due to incorrectly positioned belts, poor fixation occurs, the animal experiences discomfort.
However, disadvantages are usually found in homemade designs and cheap machines of unknown origin.
In a good pen, the animal behaves calmly due to the presence of a comfortable support. It is optimal to give preference to vertical models, since lateral fixation is dangerous for pregnant cows. In a high-quality split, the support is located at the same level with the floor. High descent is inadmissible. The cow slides on it, falls, gets injured.
How to choose the right machine
In order to optimally choose the right split for workover, you first need to find the exact answer to a number of questions:
- For how many livestock the device is designed for.
- How many cows should be processed per day.
- How many operators.
- The machine will be used for serving beef, dairy cows or a universal model is needed.
- The split is only necessary for trimming the hooves or performing other procedures.
- Which type of machine is more suitable: mechanical, hydraulic, on wheels, with an electric drive.
- How much money the owner is willing to invest to buy a split
- Is the owner ready to incur high costs for the purchase of a device that provides increased safety of the workover and the operator, comfortable working conditions.
Having found the answers to the questions, the choice of the model will be greatly simplified.
Rules for handling cattle hooves
The hard stratum corneum protects the animal's hooves from damage. However, over time, it develops into thick growths. If the stratum corneum is not cut off in time, the cow begins to experience pain while walking. The animal limps, falls.
Attention! Cracks appear on the thickened stratum corneum, where infection penetrates. The animal can develop serious illnesses.
The basic rules for trimming hooves are:
- The first procedure is performed under the guidance of an experienced technician.
- The frequency of pruning is determined by the method of keeping: stall - three times a year, loose - twice a year.
- The day before the procedure, cattle are kept on a damp bedding. Moisture makes the horny layer of the hooves softer.
- The instrument is disinfected.
- After fixing the cows make sure they are comfortable. Check the tightness of the belts. If the cow is agitated, a sedative injection is recommended.
- On the day of the procedure, cattle provide peace and quiet. Loud exclamations, noise will cause stress.
- Hooves are washed out of dirt before trimming, treated with an antiseptic solution, and checked for inflammation.
- The stratum corneum is trimmed carefully so as not to damage the hooves. Sharp protruding edges are grinded.
Before starting to service the cattle, the animal must be driven into the pen. The best option is to install it in front of the entrance doors of the barn. The animal will calmly enter the pen. They close the door behind the cow, start fixing the body parts with belts. The head must fall into a special recess.
In private backyards, a stationary machine is usually located where there is space. The owner leads the cow out of the barn on a leash, calmly leads to the place of procedure. The animal is calmed by gentle persuasion.
Advice! To better attract the cow to the pen, you can put an armful of hay.
The cattle hoof trimming sequence consists of the following steps:
- The animal driven into the split is securely fixed with belts. Carry out cleaning, examination of the hooves, take measurements.
- The first to clean the hooves of the front legs The cut is done carefully, moving along the hoof. Remove all gray build-up until a white hard surface appears.
- Having retreated from the edge of the sole about 3 mm, forceps are placed. The device will help to clean the surface of the same thickness using a cutter.
- The protruding bristles of the wool are cut with scissors. Sharp projections are filed. The hoof is considered to be properly cleaned if the sole rests flat against a flat surface such as a knife blade.
After trimming, the hooves are disinfected. The new surface is prone to infection. For protection, the white layer is smeared with a solution of copper sulfate or a potent agent is used - formaldehyde, then washed with a pressure of water.
Advice! It is more convenient to disinfect cattle hooves in 15 cm deep baths. A new antiseptic solution is prepared for each animal.
How to make a machine for processing cattle hooves with your own hands
Factory-made machines are expensive. It is not profitable to buy them for an owner with 1-3 cows. The device is made independently. A solid structure will be obtained if it is welded from metal pipes. A device assembled from wooden posts and planks will serve as a temporary split.
From the tool you will need:
- hacksaw for wood;
To fix the wooden elements, nails and self-tapping screws are prepared.
Assembling the structure:
- 4 pillars 1.7 m long and 2 pillars 0.7 m long are sawn off from a round timber or a wooden bar.
- On the site, mark the installation site of the pillars. Pits are drilled with a drill.
- Long posts are placed along the contour of the quadrangle. They form the basis of the design. Small pillars are placed along the edge. Cattle legs will be fixed to them. Small pillars are removed from the base of the quadrangle by about 0.5 m.The depth of immersion in the ground of all supports is 0.2 m.
- Planks are sewn onto the established posts. On both sides at the bottom, cross-shaped struts are nailed to prevent the structure from loosening. A crossbar is attached to two small supports.
The chain for holding the animal and the fixing straps during trimming are thrown over the posts of a home-made machine.
The machine for processing cattle hooves must be reliable. If a decision is made to make it yourself, then it is advisable to give preference to a steel structure, but it will cost more than a wooden counterpart.