There are basically two types of cattle in the world today. One includes the European and British breeds that descended from the original wild cattle (Bos taurus) of those regions. The other includes the more heat-tolerant animals of the tropics (the hump-backed droopy-eared Zebu cattle, Bos…

Editor’s note: This is the first installment of a two-part series on cattle handling. The second installment will run on Sept. 25, offering tips on sorting cattle.

Editor’s note: This is the first part of a two-part series on building and maintaining fences. Part II will run on Aug. 14.

Editor’s note: This is the second part of a two-part series on an exceptional ranch horse named Surrocco. Part I ran on June 5.

Rattlesnakes are plentiful on most western rangelands and pastures during summer, and sometimes people, pets, horses or livestock get bitten. A few years ago my son was bitten on the leg when pushing through thick brush to get some cattle out of the creek bottom where they were not supposed …

Editor’s note: This is the first part of a two-part series on Patton, a heeler cow dog that lost his legs and continues to work cattle on wheels. Part I covers his accident. Part II will run on May 22.

For centuries, horsemen have been using teeth as a means to help determine a horse’s age. The baby teeth come in at certain times, are shed and replaced by permanent teeth at certain times, and then the permanent teeth show aspects of wear that can help you determine how old the horse is.

There’s not much more frustrating than discovering that your four-wheeler or ATV won’t start when you are fixing fence in the far pasture and it’s a 2-mile hike home, or you drove out to check on the calving cows and it quits on you. Being able to do basic repairs on the job, on the ranch — …

Alan and Leslie Alexander, owners of Hang’n A Cattle Company near Pasco, Washington, lost six registered Charolais cattle this summer during a lightning storm. The cattle were on rented pasture about 15 miles away from their ranch.

Editor’s note: This is the final installment of a four-part series on Shiner Ranch in Idaho’s Lemhi Valley. It focuses on using horses to deliver hay to livestock.

Many ranchers have raised calves on bottles. It might be a twin, or a heifer’s calf that isn’t accepted by its mother, or a calf whose mother died. The important thing, if it’s a newborn calf, is to make sure it had colostrum within the first hours of life (from its own mother or from anothe…

Editor’s note: This is the third part of a four-part series on Shiner Ranch in Idaho’s Lemhi Valley. It focuses on the ranch’s draft horses.

Editor’s note: This is the second part of a four-part series on Shiner Ranch in Idaho’s Lemhi Valley. It focuses on the Yearian family.

Editor’s note: This is the first part of a four-part series on Shiner Ranch in Idaho’s Lemhi Valley. This installment focuses on the family’s history.

Editor’s note: This is the third part of a three-part series on a Wyoming rancher who still uses draft horses in his operation. This installment focuses on horse breeding.

Cattle health is influenced by many factors including nutrition, environment, stress, exposure to pathogens, etc. Going into winter, cattle should be in good body condition and have adequate forage.

Many horses get a vacation during winter, yet these months can be a fun time to ride, if you and your horse are prepared. Deep snow, slippery mud, ice or frozen ground can be treacherous. Bare feet have better traction than most shoes; the sharp edges of the bare foot can cut into the snow o…

Editor's note: This is the first part of a three-part series on a Wyoming rancher who still uses draft horses in his operation. This installment focuses on haying with horses and feeding with teams. Future installments will run Dec. 27 and Jan. 10. 

There are basically only two kinds of bits — the snaffle (with no shanks) and the curb (with shanks). Plus, there’s the Pelham, which combines a snaffle and curb, but there are hundreds of different variations on these two basic types. A so-called double bridle, used by some English riders, …

When culling cows, ranchers need to have a plan, to make the best decisions for their own operations. The plan should include pregnancy testing and closely evaluating every cow. If you had a dry summer and the cows came in a little thin after raising their calves, that’s not the best time to…

A few months ago, I saw a photo of an old barbed-wire fence with each wire held in place by duct tape. I’ve never resorted to duct tape, but I’ve used other unusual methods to patch a fence.

Fluid and electrolyte loss may lead to fatigue, muscle spasms and cramps, thumps (spasm of the diaphragm muscle, triggered by a decrease in calcium and potassium), dehydration, or heat stroke in horses that work hard in hot weather. Dehydration from sweating can interfere with the body’s abi…

High summer temperatures can present problems for working horses. Temperatures above 80 degrees increase the risk for heat stress or heat stroke if relative humidity gets above 50%, with no breeze. Under these conditions, a horse has difficulty cooling himself, since sweat does not evaporate…

There can be advantages to using several species (cattle, sheep, goats) to utilize certain pastures. In the past 30 years, there has been a lot of research on the use of sheep and goats to control noxious weeds and brush without chemicals. Bret Olson, department of range, Montana State Unive…

Horse blankets are most often used in winter, but sometimes lightweight “fly sheets” are used during the summer to protect horses from biting flies. Show horses are sometimes blanketed for turnout to keep them cleaner if their pen gets muddy. A sick horse may need to be blanketed during incl…

There are many options today when selecting syringes for vaccinating or medicating livestock — many more than were available 50 years ago. The dose guns, disposable syringes and pistol-grip, multidose syringes are standard tools we take for granted, but they are relatively new inventions.

There are many options today when selecting syringes for vaccinating or medicating livestock — many more than were available 50 years ago. The dose guns, disposable syringes and pistol-grip, multidose syringes are standard tools we take for granted, but they are relatively new inventions.

If livestock can be grazed on rangelands, wildfires are kept to a minimum and are not as devastating and don’t destroy as much habitat and soil life, according to Fred Provenza, professor emeritus at Utah State University.