Last Updated on June 13, 2023 by Georgie Smith
Electric cattle prods are common tools used to help move cattle. Are they safe to use or is this abuse dealt out from the handlers? Getting cows to behave and easily load in trailers for traveling can be difficult. The cattle prod is what many farmers use to assist the rancher with moving cattle in a specific direction.
On one side of the coin, there are people against using an electric shock on any type of animal. However, handlers often feel it is their only way to get their cattle to do as they need. The information in this article is to educate and guide users on the proper use of this popular piece of farm equipment.
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The aim is also to offer consumers the best cattle prod on the market.
Rules to Follow When Using a Cattle Prod
The manufacturers make prods with both high and low selection switches. For smaller cattle, you would use the low setting and vice versa for larger livestock. Place the points of contacts of the prod on a rear flank or the upper back leg of the cow.
Due to there being a chance of over-shocking the cow, press the power button once, then release it immediately. Never shock cattle that is wet as there is the potential of increasing the intensity of the shock.
All ranch hands dealing with cattle and cattle prods must be familiar with the behavior of livestock. All workers should also know how to administer easy, quiet handling techniques. The following are additional situations and rules the handler could consider using a cattle prod.
- When assisting with moving a herd of cattle
- When human or animal safety is at risk
- When there are no other options to get your cattle to move
- Only when the animal has a clear path for walking
- Never use a cattle prod repeatedly on the same cow
- Never use the prod on the udder, anal, facial, or genital area
- Never is it ok to use the electric shock on a calf that is under three months old that could otherwise move with manual assistance.
Results of Over-Prodding
If your cattle appear to be moving on their own or if it cannot see where to go, using a cattle prod is not acceptable. Some cattle farmers will continue zapping the same cow over and over if the animal is not moving as the farmer wishes. This type of behavior is never ok.
When you continue to prod the cattle, you are causing pain and stress that is unnecessary. Prodding the cows that are lagging behind is not the solution for getting the cattle leading the way to move forward or faster.
Continuing to prod the cow can cause a catastrophe. The cow in the back when spooked or shocked will often lead to it riding the back on the ones in front. The behavior alone can cause bruising or worse to each of the cows in the herd. When one cow feels spooked, they each will typically react.
A worst-case scenario is that the cattle you continue to produce will be overly excited. If the cow cannot see a path to run, it could quickly turn on the handler. A dangerous situation such as this is never going to have a winner.
Just because you own a cattle prod does not mean you have to put it to use every time you are rounding up your cattle. You should treat that piece of equipment just as you would any other type of mechanism, sparingly and only when necessary.
It is vital that you give yourself time to calm down and back away if you and the cattle become agitated. By not giving you both a “cool-off” period, either you, the cow, or both could end up with injuries. You should never want to find out who the winner will be between yourself and a cow.
Pick Your Battles
When animals are as large as cows, you need to ensure you keep calm. Understanding how to act or what to look for when you have a herd of agitated cows could save your life one day. Rather than having a power struggle, it is best if you and other workers back away calmly and give yourself and the cattle time to calm down.
It takes on average 20 to 30 minutes for a cow to relax after being upset or anxious. Take that time to see what it is that is upsetting your livestock. Many things can be the root of what is making the animals balk. Therefore, you should proceed with caution.
Was it you or another worker that spooked the animal? How about another animal such as a snake? Cattle startle easily by snakes and have a great fear when seeing one. If you are in a barn setting or an open field, keep in mind, snakes are all over.
A cow will see a snake usually before the workers do. Also, snakes, large or small, can easily make horses and cattle become agitated. Just make sure you give the cow time to cool down before approaching.
The following section will show you the best-selling cattle prods on Amazon. Our team is proud of the research we do just so that we can provide you with the best products on the market. The order is not meant to say one is better than the other, as we are unbiased.
The Best Cattle Prods Available on Amazon
Magrath Livestock Prod Yellow Cattle Hotshot Handle Swine Prod #22
The design of this cattle prod is to offer you help with handling and moving livestock efficiently and effectively. This product, the Magrath Stock Prod is all any farmer needs to use for help. It is a market leader and affordable for every budget. For over forty years, this product remains a super product for farmers around the globe.
The ultramodern system has no parts that wear out, move, or will need replacing down the road. The construction material is durable, strong grade high-impact plastic with a flexible shaft. That means that no matter how long you have one, it will never need repairs.
The Magrath cattle prod uses four, high-energy alkaline size C batteries. The size of the equipment is a 22-inch shaft with a 38-inch overall length. The prod displaces 5,500 kV once you release the button. There are other sizes available so be sure to check here on which size and type from the Magrath manufacturer work best for you.
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Zap Hike’N Strike Stun 950,000 Volts Gun/Flashlight
This cattle prod is a bit different in that it comes with a flashlight. The Zap Hike ‘N Strike with Extreme electrodes is excellent for when you go camping, walking, or on a hike. It is rubber coated with a non-slip molded grip that helps it remain secure in your hands.
The prod weighs eighteen pounds and comes with three lithium batteries, an extra end-cap, a removable band that is reflective, and a wrist strap. Thanks to its design, the cattle prod makes a fantastic striking weapon with a high-quality, bright LED flashlight making it the perfect take-along gadget.
Be sure to read about the manufacturer’s warranty while here to place your order.
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Magrath Hot Shot Prod Yellow Handle Cattle Animal NEW 34″ Shaft Move Livestock Effective
Here is the second product from the Magrath manufacturer. Introducing the Magrath Hot Shot Stock Prod which has a unique design. If you are looking for simplicity, here it is. This prod helps move and handle your cattle efficiently and effectively. Being a market leader is nothing new for the makers of this cattle prod.
The Magrath company has been around designing equipment that fits every budget and is high-quality for over 40 years. It is simple to see why once you have one of their products. The electronic system like the one mentioned above has no parts that move, or that will need replacing down the road.
This particular item has a 34-inch shaft with an overall 49-inch overall length. Durable, high-impact plastic is just one reason why this prod lasts for years. It also comes with replacement shafts as well as the batteries needed to work.
This prod displaces on average 5,500 KV, and you can get yours here as well as check the varying sizes to order the one for your unique situation.
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Hot Shot 48 in DuraProd Electric Livestock Prod with RH48
Consumers such as yourself spoke, and the Hot Shot manufacturers listened by providing the first five-star cattle prod on the market. The legacy of the cattle prod is one that goes way back to the days when cowboys roamed the prairie and cattle was the primary source of income for most.
As we all know, electricity was not the luxury source that it is today. When the Hot Shot manufacturers designed this cattle prod, they kept the consumer in mind and made it the best, for less. It is no secret that it is the leader in the market with a patented technology that reduces feedback shock-sealed circuitry.
It has a rubber handle grip with an oversized trigger and a handguard with a built-in safety switch. The four size C batteries come with the product. The Hot Shot product has a 48 rigid shaft of solid fiberglass for extra durability.
Go here to see a picture of the five-star cattle prod and order yours today.
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Miller DX36 Livestock Feeding Equipment
Last but not least is this Miller Livestock Feeing Cattle Prod. For those who need effectiveness while on a budget cannot go wrong with this cattle prod. The fiberglass shaft is 36 inches in length. It has a rubber handle which gives the user a grip that does not slide.
The Miller Prod come with four, size C batteries and is perfect for any livestock handler and hauler. Just because farmers, ranch hands, cattle haulers and handlers need a durable cattle prod does not mean they need to spend much money.
This particular product is easy on the wallet but just as effective as the other, more expensive models. You too can get one whether you want it as your permanent prod or a simple starter, it’s here. Get yours ordered today and have it delivered right to your front door, safe and secure.
Buy from Amazon
There are the top five best-selling cattle prods available on Amazon. Remember, Amazon is the leader that consumers from all around the globe trust for safe shopping as well as offering a warranty.
Handling Temperamental Cattle
Cattle are just like any other animal that lives in the outdoors. That means they can and will turn on each other as well as humans. The following are generalizations on how to handle cattle when they are temperamental.
- Cows that are startled, anxious, or excited are much harder to handle. If the cow suddenly becomes any of those three when you are dealing with the animal, Stop. Give the cow at least thirty minutes to calm down. Just because you can adjust to a fast-paced environment does not mean your livestock will. Give both you and the cow time to settle down to prevent injuries.
- Cows are typically color-blind with a lack of good depth perception. Therefore, cattle can be incredibly sensitive to contrast. Try to avoid dark shadows, blind turns, and anything that is swinging or dangling in their way for simple movement.
- High-pitched and loud noises frighten cattle. When you move your cattle do so peacefully and as quiet as possible.
- Most cattle can remember when or where a “bad” experience took place. They also establish an association with memories of fear. Do your best to keep your cattle in areas where it feels safe from predators.
- Cows that recently gave birth will be much more of a danger to humans. Be sure you and your employees are aware of the risk. It would help if you also trained everyone on your farm how to handle a new calf and its mother correctly.
Q: Should I remove the calf from the mother to treat the mother for health issues?
A: It may be best that you do indeed lead the mother out instead of her baby. She will instantly feel threatened if you approach her newborn.
Q: Is a cattle Prod safe to use on a human?
A: No-there should never be a time when you want to use any electrical device such as a cattle prod on another human.
If at all possible, try every other avenue before you resort to a cattle prod. Of course, there will be times when you find one of your herd is just being stubborn and needs a little persuasion to move as you want. When times such as this occurs, never over prod any animal and do your best to limit the use.
Do you have any experience with using one of the best cattle prods and your farm? We would love to hear from you. Leave us a note down below in our comment section, and we will get back to you. While you are reading this, please “like and share” our work to help us grow and help others.