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Low-stress livestock handling: Why is it important?

Whit Hibbard Published on 23 January 2015

“Low-stress livestock handling” (LSLH) is a livestock-centered, behaviorally correct, psychologically oriented, ethical and humane method of working livestock which is based on mutual communication and understanding, not coercion.

LSLH was developed by the late livestock handling expert, Bud Williams.

Why is LSLH important?

Numerous scientific studies have illustrated that indices of animal performance (e.g., weight gain, conception rates, milk yield, immune function and carcass quality) are positively correlated with good handling practices and negatively correlated with coercive handling practices.

Additionally, the adoption of LSLH, if done properly, can enable the same amount of work with livestock to be done with less people, in less time and with less stress. It also improves safety, animal welfare and quality of life. And all of this is achieved with no additional inputs, only a change in thinking and behavior.

Principles

LSLH is based on certain principles, including:

1. Keep animals in a normal frame of mind.

2. Animals should not be forced to do anything they do not want to do or are not ready to do.

3. Set up every situation so our idea becomes their idea.

4. Animals want to avoid pressure, and they need to experience release from pressure.

5. They want to be in a herd.

6. They want to move in the direction they are headed.

7. They want to follow other animals.

8. Good movement attracts good movement.

9. Animals want to see what’s pressuring them.

10. They want to see where you want them to go.

11. They want to go by you or around you.

12. Under excess pressure, they want to go back where they came from.  end mark

Click here to see the centerspread By Whit Hibbard that shows the Techniques.  

Whit Hibbard
  • Whit Hibbard
  • Editor
  • Stockmanship Journal

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