Wall makes it hard for cows to reach the food. What can we do about it?

Wall makes it hard for cows to reach the food. What can we do about it?

Have a look at this picture! Notice how high the wall is, which makes it hard for cows to reach the food. They can't stand on the ledge eighter, because their neck gets stuck. Solution right know is to push the food every hour. What else could be done? Please share your thoughts!

Picture from certified CowSignals trainer Wim Hessels, For Farmers.

Comments (7)

Halbe Rosema

The way this cow puts her rearlegs far under her body to have more weight on the rearlegs means probably that she has sore frontclaws. In that case she can't reach too far to the feed without having more pain. So do a hooftrimming on her four feet and see if she will do better.
I see a lot of lameness on the frontclaws where cows are troubled by a step or where the feedalley is to low.

Anouk Brinkhoff

Thanks for that additional observation!

Susan du Plooy

I would raise the level of the feed so that the cows can reach the feed more easily. The wall isn't in the correct place in my opinion it needs to be underneath the neck rail not infront or behind it.

jon offland

I would remove the self locking yokes and replace with a feed rail as the cheapest alternative.


In the photo it looks as if the cows cannot comfortably stand close to the wall because the floor is rough where an old wall base remains.
Leaning the feed rail out at the top by about 10" would allow a little more reach.

Anouk Brinkhoff

Thanks for your suggestions!
Here are some more: make the wall smaller or make the fence slanting forward (which is probably what Gerry suggests too)

Peter Havrlant

This issue has been identified in Beef Feedlot systems where the wall is very important. Firstly to keep manure out (more an issue in beef systems with cleaning regimes on a longer term basis and secondly food wastage. Here feed troughs (as opposed to alleys in barns). Jon has hit the nail on the head for this situation, remove the yolks and go with a single top feed rail. For future design the effective wall height relevant to the feed level should be reduced. The obvious way is to reduce the wall height but what about raising the feed alley / dropping the height of the barn floor. Wall height still remains high and keeps the feed alley free from contamination. If engineered out at earthworks stage this would have little to no cost implications or additional concrete requirement.

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