Monday, December 31, 2012


Carolyn commented on my last post with this...
Non-cattle chick here....
What does it mean to "fit" a steer? Does he have somewhere fancy to go and needs to squeeze into a size 30 pair of slacks?
I figured a post would be more appropriate than a reply so...
Fitting cattle involves washing them and rinsing very good. Leaving any soap/shampoo in will cause flaky skin or hair loss among other things.Rinsing with vinegar helps with skin ailments.
After bath the animal is blown out using  blower that is similar to a giant hair dryer. Some have heat choices and different speeds or power settings. You blow against the natural hair growth pattern which usually means everything is blown forward and slightly up. This promotes more hair growth in the long run but makes hair more workable in the moment.
From here fitting starts with clippers. LN's steer head was clipped down fairly close too and blended in at the neck which was clipped down but a lil less than head. One reason each is clipped is to make rest of body appear bigger/stouter. It also emphasises masculinity in the frame. A females is clipped to show its femininity too. Each in a different way.
Body hair is trimmed of loose, long pieces and shaped and worked to show a boxy, more square frame.
Tail is clipped/shaved part way down to allow butt or rear view to appear bigger and wider.
Tail end is clipped off near knee joint. Why? I don't know just is ;^]
Top line (hair along ridge of back) is trimmed to end slightly up at the back end to create a nice line of sight.
Leg hair is blown out and products used to enhance it's depth to make natural size of legs look even bigger.
Products are used on hooves and hair coats to shape and define everything.
It's a process that takes hours and lots of months of prep.
Cattle are given regular (every day is ideal) washing or at least rinsing  to promote hair growth.
The colder the animal is kept the better it grows and maintains hair needed for fitting.
In winter we leave the side of their pen open but protected from elements like rain and in the summer we put fans turned on them all day.
Colored animals are kept inside during days so their hair color doesn't sunburn.
There is tons more info but this is a very short condensed accounting of the fitting process.
If I didn't bore you to sleep...
Happy New Year!!!


  1. I can honestly say that your steer is better groomed than I am!!

    1. LOL Carolyn, me too ;] but they don't get every day it's just ideal.

  2. Wow!!! I can't imagine washing an animal everyday, I can barely get my little one to bathe, thats alot of work!!!

    1. Yea it is work. Doesn't happen each day just should :} Try to at least get 4 or 5 days each week.

  3. That is some serious commitment!

    1. Candy, commitmentin money and time and here in DE kids don't receive big bucks at jr auction like in other states. Learning experience has to suffice some years.

  4. Well, I'm glad Carolyn did ask, 'cause I sure didn't know diddly-squat about the process. Very interesting!