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Casting Restraints

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Cows are more easily and safely cast than horses since they struggle less and are more willing to lie down. Bedding should be arranged for them none the less, as it may save them from bruises.

Bulls are more vigorous and are harder to cast and control. It may be safer to cast them with a double side-line harness than with one of the squeezes.

There are two methods of casting restraints

1. Burley Method of Casting

This method of casting cattle, devised by Dr. D. R. Burley of Georgia, has many advantages over the other casting methods. First, it is not necessary in this method to tie the rope around the horns or the neck. It is simply passed around the animal's body which takes less time. Second, this restraint does not put pressure over the thorax and thus does not interfere with the action of the heart and lungs. Third, it does not endanger the genital organs of the bull or the mammary vessels of the cow. Finally, with this restraint both rear legs may be tied with the ends of the casting rope.

While the cow is being held by a strong halter or by a nose lead a forty foot piece of rope is placed over her back with its center at the withers. The ends are carried between the forelegs and crossed at the sternum. One end is carried up each side of the animal's body and the two are crossed again over the back. Each end passes downward between the rear legs going between the inner surface of the legs and under the udder or scrotum, as the case may be.

When the ends of the rope are pulled, the cow will fall. The operator may control the direction of the fall by pulling the casting ropes so that the animal is forced to one side or the other.

To tie the rear leg the operator keeps both ropes tout and slides the uppermost one along the under surface of the rear leg to the fetlock. He flexes the leg and makes a half hitch around the fetlock.

The end is then carried around the leg above the hock, across the cannon bone, and back around the fetlock. The leg is secured by several such "figure 8's".

To tie the front leg a short heavy cord or rope about six feet long is needed. One end of it is fastened around the pastern with a clove hitch leaving a free end about eight inches long. The front leg is flexed and the long end of the cord carried forward and passed under the main casting rope descending from the withers.

The cord is passed around the flexed front leg several times and tied in a reefer's knot to the short free end at the pastern.

The animal is rolled over and the rear leg of the other side is tied with the other end of the casting rope. With another six foot cord, the other front leg is tied, and the animal is then completely restrained.

2. Rope Squeeze

This is a standard method of casting a cow. The rope for this restraint may be arranged on a cow while she is in the stanchion. She may then be led to the place where it is desired that she lie down and tension applied to the end of the rope.

Make a loop around the cow's neck using a bowline knot placed as indicated in the drawing.

Throw the end of the rope over her back to the opposite side.

Reaching under the cow, pick it up an bring it around her body and under the standing part of the rope near the bowline to form a half hitch just behind the shoulder.

By tossing the end over the cow's back again, make another half hitch just in from of the udder. Pulling the rope will force the cow to lie down.

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