Cattle Practices

Below are fact sheets for Alberta livestock producers on several industry issues.

Many of the fact sheets require the Adobe PDF Reader (Portable Document Format). If you don’t have it, click here to download it free from Adobe.

Code of Practice For Care and Handling of Beef Cattle

The ABP supports responsible animal care and handling. The booklet "Recommended code of practice for the care and handling of farm animals: Beef cattle edition" outlines the key elements of all aspects of animal care and handling throughout the beef industry chain of production. Copies of the booklet are available free of charge by contacting the ABP office abpfeedback@albertabeef.org or you can download it here.

Should I transport this animal?

http://afac.ab.ca/producer-info/beef/beef-humane-handling-guidelines

Recognizing when an animal may be transported, transported with special provisions directly to a veterinarian or to an abattoir, or is unfit for transport is important to ensure the best standards of animal care.

Use this decision tree and the advice of your veterinarian to determine when it is acceptable to transport an animal.

If an animal is unfit for transport, it may be salvageable through on farm emergency slaughter. There are currently two available options to ensure the humane treatment of animals and alignment with the provincial Meat Inspection Act.

Inspected Meat
To qualify as “Inspected Meat,” an appointed meat inspector (usually a veterinarian) must preform an ante-mortem inspection of the animal prior to emergency slaughter (humane stunning and bleeding) at the farm or feedlot. Then the carcass must then be transported, in a manner that protects it from contamination or spoilage, to a Provincially Licensed Abattoir for evisceration and further processing. The carcass must be delivered to the abattoir within two hours of slaughter and receive a post-mortem (PM) inspection. The PM inspection can be done by either the appointed inspector or by a Meat Inspection Branch Inspector. Once approved, the product is stamped as inspected and is then legal to sell. Note that the appropriate forms must be completed by the appointed inspector on farm or feedlot and these forms will need to accompany the carcass to the licensed facility. Professional fees to engage an appointed inspector are at the discretion of the provider.

Uninspected Meat
Only the animal owner and their direct household can consume this meat. It is illegal to sell uninspected meat. In this case, a licenced mobile butcher or the owner at the farm or feedlot can slaughter the animal. The carcass can then be transported to a facility to be processed. It must arrive clean and free from contamination. The processor is required to keep the carcass separate from any inspected products and mark it as “UNINSPECTED NOT FOR SALE.”

For more information about emergency on-farm slaughter, including a list of appointed inspectors, abattoirs, and mobile butchers in your area, contact the following regional meat inspection offices: Airdrie 403-948-8514, Edmonton/Grande Prairie 780-427-7011, Vermilion 780-853 8113 and Lethbridge 403-382-4261, or toll free by first dialing 310-0000.

Cattle Wintering Sites - Managing for Good Stewardship

Assessment and Design Tool: A Guide to Selecting and Managing a Wintering Site in Western Canada

Developed in cooperation with Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development and PFRA. View the PDF document at Alberta Agriculture Food and Rural Development. Copies are available free of charge for Alberta cattle producers from the ABP office.

Emergency Preparedness

As a rural Albertan you need to protect your animals from risks posed by natural disasters and other emergencies including: collapsed barns, extreme weather, flooding, and dehydration. Download the PDF preparedness pamphlet.

AFAC large animal emergency rescue