Handling Livestock Safely

“You can tell what kind of stockman a person is by watching the way his animals behave.” This popular old saying rings true for agricultural workers who handle livestock as part of their jobs.

According to Auburn University, animals that are handled gently experience less stress, and therefore pose significantly less danger to their handlers. In addition, animals that do not experience stress are also able to fight disease and maintain a healthy weight more easily.

To reduce your risk of a livestock-inflicted injury while on the job, remember these safety tips:

  • Livestock such as cattle, sheep and horses have broad, panoramic vision but very limited depth perception. Therefore, they can see all the way around them, except for the area around their noses and in the rear. To livestock, shadows appear as holes and moving distractions can cause them to be easily frightened. To avoid scaring livestock as you work with them, approach them slowly and not directly from behind.
  • Keep the facility clean, in good working order and free of clutter to remove any obstacles in the event that an animal becomes out of control.
  • Paint handling facilities in one color since livestock can perceive color and multiple tones can cause stress. Also, be wary that a sudden change in color may cause animals to balk as well.

Want to know more about livestock safety? Contact GDI Insurance to find out other ways to keep your animals calm.

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