Agri Vehicles Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Halter training  (Read 4698 times)

Border Lady

  • Joined Sep 2015
Halter training
« on: April 26, 2016, 06:48:40 pm »
Hi There,

At what age do I start trying to put a halter on my Shetland calf?
OK she is only 2 days old but I know with foals you get a halter on them at an early age.
Any advice.

Thanks

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Halter training
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2016, 09:41:06 pm »
The earleir you start the easier it will be. Although tbh, I start when they are about six months old and housed for the winter, which suits our system.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: Halter training
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2016, 10:54:46 pm »
Mine are Jerseys, but I do find it much easier to do it when they're only a week old or so, and are indoors.  I'd say, if you've got the time and facilities to do it while they're very young, go for it!
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

orkney danny

  • Joined Oct 2016
Re: Halter training
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2017, 04:11:05 pm »
what do you do when they start to struggle, mine got quite ANGRY

landroverroy

  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: Halter training
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2017, 05:20:47 pm »
 Loop the halter round something solid like a fence or upright. That way the animal fights against something solid that won't give and it soon learns and stops arguing. Don't worry about it appearing to go mad and throwing itself on the floor. It'll soon stop. But do ensure you can free the rope instantly should it get itself tied up in it. For this reason only ever tie up with a slip knot that is easily freed or else wrap the rope several times round your post , so the post takes the strain, but keep hold of the end so you can let go and release it all if necessary.
Rules are made:
  for the guidance of wise men
  and the obedience of fools.

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Halter training
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2017, 08:00:39 pm »
what do you do when they start to struggle, mine got quite ANGRY

They get fearful - you're a predator, they are prey. Buut unlike horses, cattle have a stronger fight instinct than flight - and don't forget they are cornered.

I feed mine and put the halter on while they're eating and stand holding the halter rope while they eat, then take it off before they're finished. Once theyre' OK with that, I put a bit of pressure on the halter to ask them to move but as soon as they "give" I release it. They soon learn that the way to stop the pressure is to follow it. If they get upset, I just let them go rather than fight them - then they don't "beat" you. You can just go and pick up the rope again and start over.

I tie them up for a few minutes when they're eating and build up from there.

Time and patience. And stay safe - hyper calves can get their feet to head height quite easily.

The problem with tying them up to "fight it out" with the gatepost is that they can knock horns off and that's an awful mess.

http://www.accidentalsmallholder.net/diary/sunny-and-rosie-learn-about-halters/



greenbeast

  • Joined Jul 2014
Re: Halter training
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2017, 08:28:53 am »
what do you do when they start to struggle, mine got quite ANGRY

They get fearful - you're a predator, they are prey. Buut unlike horses, cattle have a stronger fight instinct than flight - and don't forget they are cornered.

I feed mine and put the halter on while they're eating and stand holding the halter rope while they eat, then take it off before they're finished. Once theyre' OK with that, I put a bit of pressure on the halter to ask them to move but as soon as they "give" I release it. They soon learn that the way to stop the pressure is to follow it. If they get upset, I just let them go rather than fight them - then they don't "beat" you. You can just go and pick up the rope again and start over.

I tie them up for a few minutes when they're eating and build up from there.

Time and patience. And stay safe - hyper calves can get their feet to head height quite easily.

The problem with tying them up to "fight it out" with the gatepost is that they can knock horns off and that's an awful mess.

http://www.accidentalsmallholder.net/diary/sunny-and-rosie-learn-about-halters/

It's my first go at this but i'm basically doing this

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: Halter training
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2017, 12:20:08 pm »
It's best to not let them get fighty, as Rosemary says. 

Personally I hate the 'swinging' of any animal, and you can't do 'pressure and release' if the rope is tied to a fixed post or wall.  So starting very young, and getting them used to the halter while they eat and you aren't applying any pressure, as Rosemary describes, is best if you can.

And then, the 'pressure', as you ask them to move towards you, is soft and springy, not fixed and hard.  If they pull away, you maintain the pressure but don't increase it, and you never make it a strong pressure, just gentle but insistent.  I'm not sure I am describing it well, but anyone who rides horses with a bit will understand the distinction.  To maintain a consistent pressure, you may adjust your hold as they pull back - but they don't achieve any less pressure by doing it, neither does the pressure increase.  So it neither makes them be more fighty nor makes them think it's worth doing. You don't give in to them, don't reduce/relax the pressure, until they show a tiny give into the pressure, when you release the pressure as their reward.  But at first that give may be as small as a slight lowering of an arched neck, anything at all.  Gradually, as they learn to expect the reward of release, ask for a little more each time.  And just do it one or two times per session at first, so they don't get fed up or worked up.  It's amazing how quickly they learn if they're not pushed (or pulled!  :D) too hard.
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Border Lady

  • Joined Sep 2015
Re: Halter training
« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2017, 05:40:56 pm »
I too agree with the soft approach, that's exactly how I have halter trained my Shetland calf who is now 8 months old. Just started teaching  her to lead so the previous comments are very welcome, I need to work on that bit more. Rosemary's video is also fab. So softly, softly is kindest and get's results!  :):

greenbeast

  • Joined Jul 2014
Re: Halter training
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2017, 09:29:43 am »
Halter training is going great here, Mary J is about 7-8 weeks old and i'm trying to walk her about the farm several times a week, this morning she met the Sussex's


Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Halter training
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2017, 10:09:15 am »
My lovely Winnie has turned into a monster. She's kicked me twice in the last two days and there's a huge rigmarole to get her halter on. However, looking at the way she was "presenting" herslef to Ace thsi morning, I think I can put it down to hormones  :eyelashes: Ace, btw, was more interested in food.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: Halter training
« Reply #11 on: January 26, 2017, 10:17:08 pm »
My lovely Winnie has turned into a monster. She's kicked me twice in the last two days and there's a huge rigmarole to get her halter on. However, looking at the way she was "presenting" herslef to Ace thsi morning, I think I can put it down to hormones  :eyelashes: Ace, btw, was more interested in food.

Must be something in the name.  BH had a Winnie was a bu77er when she was a-bulling.  Jumped two fences, a wall and crossed a road to get to the bull the first time...

Hope your lovely Winnie comes back to you.  Well, for 19 days out of every 21 anyway...

And that Ace... needs to adjust his priorities, don't he ? :D
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

 

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Ark Farm Livestock Movement Service

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2022. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS