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Offline knabe

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Re: "Slow and Steady" or "Show him who's boss"?
« Reply #15 on: November 16, 2013, 08:32:24 PM »
Knabe can you please try to explain how to disengage the calf's rear end. I have no idea of how to begin that job. Thanks, Brent.

i'll try and post something tomorrow with a couple of pics.  hopefully it won't be too hard as all i have to play with right now is a first calf heifer who is pretty tame.  hopefully her lack of training will make it easier to demonstrate. she hasn't had a halter on for over a year and was never really worked with.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2013, 08:33:16 PM by knabe »

Offline CAB

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Re: "Slow and Steady" or "Show him who's boss"?
« Reply #16 on: November 16, 2013, 08:42:38 PM »
Thanks Marc. Brent

Offline barngoddess

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Re: "Slow and Steady" or "Show him who's boss"?
« Reply #17 on: November 16, 2013, 09:19:23 PM »
Seen some great advice on here but here's what I like to do with the hot headed cases (had 2 this year...most we've had in a while!)

I like your idea of the slow and steady approach...we always try that first when breaking babies straight from the field. But obviously that's not working out for this guy. I think a good mix of the slow and steady and the dominance tactic is the key. Tie him to a sturdy post...low and loose enough so he can eat and lay down. Keep him there as long as it takes. Our longest case stayed tied there for a week. Carry feed, hay, and water to him by hand. Make him learn that if he wants fed and taken care of, he has to let you do it. Every time you do this rub his head, neck, back, whatever he'll let you touch. Just get him used to you and build your trust before using any tools on him (ie. stick, brushes, combs). One of my steer calves this year flipped whenever I tried something new on him, so I went back to basics and just got him to trust me. We've worked through getting him used to everything (he even freaked when I would spray sheen on him) and built his trust, now he's fine.

When he gets a little better, try tying his head up higher and working around him. Clean around him, walk around him, whatever. Try a brush or comb, starting at his shoulder and slowly working back. Don't try his legs until you trust that he won't kick your teeth out as soon as you touch them. If he's scared of the tools, set them around him and leave them there. I hung the curry comb in front of my steer and set the can of sheen in front of him for a good hour or two until he realized they weren't monsters. The above poster suggested a radio- very helpful! When I would tie this steer up I'd blast the radio so he got used to voices and noise.

Hope you get it worked out of him! The hardest part is getting your daughter to be able to trust him, and of course for you to be able to trust him with her!

Offline knabe

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Re: "Slow and Steady" or "Show him who's boss"?
« Reply #18 on: November 17, 2013, 07:05:13 PM »
Thanks Marc. Brent

well i tried and tried to hold the camera and making them step and take a pic at the same time is a little harder than i thought, but here goes.

the "picture" right before this one is i stopped her with her left rear foot forward of her right rear with her left rear foot toes pointing correctly ahead. as she walks in a tight circle around me with me behind her shoulder while bending her neck just enough when i smoothly walk towards her left rear hip a little bit.  at that point, they will lift their left rear leg and place it back. obviously, this is not easy to do on an unbroke animal this close, but the same thing applies.  if you are paying attention, you can catch this foot just as it is about to come up and make a tight little circle and push towards the right rear hip "through" the left hip.  at that point, there is really no where for the foot to but back and towards the other foot, but behind it.

everything is done in circles smaller and smaller so there is no tugging pulling, yanking etc, only holding.  they find the release themselves.  i'll try and get some more.

with an unbroke calf, simply stop and let them find the end of the lead, preferably in a pen so they don't learn to run away and continually walk towards their rear end, even tapping it with a twirling end of a lead.  obvioulsy they can kick, so use discretion.  at some point you will learn it.  it's actually easier on unbroken calves as they understand immediately what you are trying to do.  once they stop and be the "submissive" prey and they get petted, scratched, fed a handful of grain whatever, they give over to you.  it's so useful for them to know you know how to get them to stop with your brain instead of your brawn.

« Last Edit: November 17, 2013, 07:09:12 PM by knabe »

Offline knabe

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Re: "Slow and Steady" or "Show him who's boss"?
« Reply #19 on: November 18, 2013, 09:28:24 AM »
I guess another way to look at it is getting the animal to pivot on its front end. When it does that, it cant really go anywhere.  This is counterintuitive as most people are trying to pull the front end to get it to stop and i want to do the oposite to stop. Its much easier to get them to find the slack this way. Then as the learn, you use the cues less and less. At some point, it becomes extremely easy for them to mirror your every move.

 

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