Halter breaking heifers

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Backbone Ranch
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Halter breaking heifers

Postby Backbone Ranch » Sun Nov 30, 2014 2:03 pm

I am just starting to halter break two of our Murray Grey heifers. I plan to show them in mid-August of 2015. I have never halter broken anything before, but I feel like they are coming along quite well. I have only worked with them for four days, but I am able to lead them about 30-40 yards without very much resistance. They were weaned at 614 and 530 lbs 2 weeks ago. On the first of the four days, I slipped a halter on them and let them drag it around. On day two, I tied them up for 30 minutes. I kept a close eye on them to make sure they didn't injure themselves. They stopped struggling heavily after about 10 or 15 minutes. After that, I let them drag the halter around for the rest of the day. On day three, I tied them up twice in 30 minute increments. After untying them, I let them drag the halter around. Today I tied them up for 40 minutes. I brushed them and scratched them. After untying them, I lead them around the paddock. I rewarded them with a handful of range cubes. I will work on other things as well in the coming weeks along with what I have been doing currently. I think that they will be well-prepared for the show in August.
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branguscowgirl
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Re: Halter breaking heifers

Postby branguscowgirl » Sun Nov 30, 2014 3:59 pm

Sounds like you have a great start!
I usually start mine well before they are weaned. But I show the "Cow/Calf Division". Brangus can be pretty tuff to handle if I wait until they are 500-600 pounds! The nice thing is once they are started, they never forget it. I can then turn them out for months, and pick up where I left off the next show session.
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Nesikep
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Re: Halter breaking heifers

Postby Nesikep » Sun Nov 30, 2014 4:11 pm

Sounds like progress! I think your cattle are pretty laid back to start with, which goes a long way. My bull calf was a lazy guy and halter broke with minimal effort.
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VCC
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Re: Halter breaking heifers

Postby VCC » Mon Dec 01, 2014 10:35 am

I don't like letting them drag the halter for very long, I try and get a show stick on them as soon as I can. Once they get used to it and you can find their spot you can halter them pretty easy (using the rope halter). I just start scratching them and once they settle down slip the halter on. We have a small pen we run them in to halter them it does make it easier.

Last year’s heifer does not like the halter but I can halter her in the pasture if I take the show stick, she likes the scratching more than not getting the halter on.
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Re: Halter breaking heifers

Postby waihou » Sat Dec 06, 2014 9:20 pm

Sounds like they have started well, they should be well trained by August! We usually start with calves still on their dams, weighing around 200kgs over 400lbs.
Our local Show is mid January (6 weeks away!)and for the last few years we start training a few likely candidates from now onwards, one year we did 9, but this year it may only be 2. After 3 or 4 weeks of daily tie up with some hay (it is summer here right now) and progressing to being led round the paddock, we can take them away from Mum for the day and introduce them to the sights and sounds of the Show and transport there and back to Mum. They never forget!
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