In order for your calf to catch the judge’s attention you need to know how to properly set up your calf in the show ring. It will take lots of time and practice to get your calf used to you moving its feet, but you can get started as soon as your calf is used to the show stick.
It is important that you use a combination of pressure on the halter and your show stick to move your calf’s feet into the proper position. Britney Creamer, Sure Champ Show Cattle Expert provides four simple steps to get your calf looking its best in the show ring.
The first step is making sure you choose the right size of show stick for your height and the size of the calf. Don’t be afraid to carry a big show stick, especially if you are a younger or shorter showman. A longer show stick will allow you to reach the hind feet easier. We recommend a large or extra large show stick.
Ultimately, it should be your goal to use your stock show the least amount possible. The best showman are able to walk their calf into place without setting the feet with the show stick. Slow your pace as you are about to stop with you calf. Once you have them stopped into position, scratch your calf on the belly or brisket before you move any feet. To pull a foot forward apply pressure on the halter in a forward motion, and use the hook of the stick below the calf’s declaw. To push a foot back, apply pressure backwards with your halter, and use the point of the stick about an inch about where the hoof splits to push the foot back. By using halter pressure it will encourage your calf to work with you instead of against you.
You can also use some good footwork of your own. You can place your foot in front of your calves foot and use it as a road block when pulling a front foot forward. After your calf is well broke you will also be able to use your foot to push a front foot or backwards.
Being able to move feet is the key to making sure your calf has the most appeal possible in the show ring.
Click here to access our video library to watch more how to videos.