Slaughtering cattle (cattle) requires proper training and accurate knowledge of the slaughtering technique. Below are the step-by-step instructions for each method, the necessary tools and recommendations for further processing of the carcass.
Which cattle should be slaughtered?
Sanitary regulations prohibit slaughter of cattle without examination by a veterinarian before the procedure. This ensures that diseases that are dangerous to humans and other animals do not spread. Home breeding of cattle does not exclude their infection with diseases on pastures, water from reservoirs or from other cows.
Slaughtering a cow for meat is strictly prohibited in the following diseases:
- malignant tumors;
- catarrhal fever;
When symptoms of one of these diseases appear, therapeutic measures are applied to the animal. If the disease is started, then the only method of getting rid of it is forced slaughter. The whole process takes place in a sanitary slaughterhouse under the supervision of a veterinarian; after slaughter, the carcass is completely disposed of.
The reasons why the slaughter is temporarily postponed:
- when vaccinated against foot and mouth disease - for 21 days;
- for vaccination against anthrax - for a period of 14 days;
- after treatment with antibiotics - for a period until the drug is completely eliminated from the body;
- with a disease with non-communicable diseases and increased body temperature - until the condition stabilizes;
- prevention and treatment of parasites - a month;
- newborn calves up to 14 days.
Optimal time for slaughter
The optimal age of the animal for slaughter is from 1 year. This is due to the fact that up to a year an individual is actively gaining weight, and after this period, an increase in cattle body weight is possible only as a result of fattening, i.e., a significant increase in the diet.
With targeted raising of the bull for meat, refuse castration, because this leads to a slowdown in growth and development. The meat yield and its quality characteristics will be significantly lower.
Autumn is considered the most suitable time of year for slaughter. The procedure is preferably carried out in the morning, at a minimum ambient temperature.
Before slaughtering a cow, preparatory measures must be taken, otherwise there is a risk of infection of people and other animals with dangerous diseases. It is important to ensure the preparation of the animal itself and the place for slaughter.
Prior to slaughtering the bull, an animal should be examined by a veterinarian. The specialist will determine if there are contraindications to the use of this beef, if necessary, prescribe treatment or extreme measures, characterized by forced slaughter and disposal of the carcass.
During a veterinary examination, the temperature of the cow's body must be measured.
At the end of the examination, the veterinarian issues a document based on which further work is carried out.
Upon receipt of permission to slaughter a cow from a veterinarian, all feed is removed from her diet, water is provided in abundance. This measure will allow you to clean the intestines of the animal, which during slaughter will greatly facilitate the process of carcass cutting. You should not limit the nutrition of cattle for more than a day, otherwise the meat yield will decrease.
Immediately before slaughter, the cow is washed, cleaning wool and hooves so that dirt and pathogens do not get into the meat when cutting.
Do not scare or beat the animal. In a stressful situation, with a decrease in lactic acid in the body, the quality of the meat, its color and ability to be stored change for the worse. Bruising interferes with the bleeding of the carcass; they have to be cleaned when cutting the carcass.
An important point in preparing for slaughter are measurements of the animal for calculating live weight or weighing.
What do you need?
Cattle - animals are strong, it is hardly possible to kill them every second, therefore it is necessary to apply stunning. When slaughtering, it is important that the dying cow does not feel pain.
For livestock slaughter you will need:
- rope or cable;
- downhole knives;
- containers for blood, meat and organs;
- pure water.
In industrial slaughter, the name and number of necessary tools depends on the method of slaughter and its scale. But fundamentally the list does not change.
The method of slaughtering a cow depends on the mass of the animal, the professional skills of the carver and the chosen place of work. With insufficient experience, it is better to turn to the slaughterhouse so that the masters of their craft can cope with the task.
Slaughtering livestock involves several stages:
- extracting the insides;
- carcass cutting;
- sanitation (toilet).
This method is most often used in personal farmsteads. Its essence is to achieve the unconscious state of the cow, followed by bloodletting. For this:
- Throw a rope on the horns of the animal, and tie it tightly to the support, fixing the head.
- Hit the cow's forehead with a wooden hammer, stunning it.
- In case of loss of consciousness to animals, dissect the skin on the neck, exposing the carotid artery and jugular veins.
- Cut large blood vessels.
- Provide the carcass with a suspension for draining blood.
Stun with bleeding was used in ancient times. It is believed that if a cow is hit several times on the forehead, it will lose consciousness due to a concussion. The experiments showed that in this way these injuries for the brain can not be achieved. Therefore, this method of slaughter is considered particularly cruel.
A wooden mallet must be struck at the same place up to 15 times, so metal sledgehammers are often used.
Agony, which often occurs during slaughter, reduces meat quality, bleeding takes place at a minimum level, and blood residues lead to accelerated spoilage of meat in the warm period.
It is possible to understand whether bleeding is carried out correctly by collecting blood in a container and measuring its final volume. In cattle, the blood level in the body is approximately 7-8% of the total weight. If its collected amount is equal to at least half of this value, then the slaughter is performed correctly.
The behavior of an animal in agony is unpredictable. You should be extremely careful and careful so that the cow does not cause harm to the butchers.
The method of slow bleeding is applied by the northern European nomadic peoples and Siberian nomads. One of the most cruel methods involves such actions:
- A calmly standing bull pierces a long knife in the neck area towards the heart. So dissected arteries and veins near the heart.
- The animal falls into an uncontrolled state, breaks out and twitches. Blood flows quickly from the wound.
- The bull weakens from blood loss and gradually calms down, and soon dies.
Using a buterol with a cutter
A buterol with a chisel is a special sledgehammer of a butcher. It weighs 2300 g, and the length of the handle is 90 cm. One side of the hammer consists of a cone-shaped cutter, and on the other side is a hook. The method consists of several actions:
- Beat the bull with the butler in the frontal part so that the incisor breaks through the skull, forming a hole.
- Insert the willow rod into the resulting tunnel.
- Destroy the medulla oblongata.
- Bleed the carcass.
A butcher must possess the skill of owning a buterol and be strong enough to organize a good shot at the target. Otherwise, agony of the animal is possible, which causes additional problems during slaughter.
The overlay for putting on the head of a cow or a bull is made of copper and leather. She is called a killer muzzle or a butler with a mask.
- Fasten the mask with straps so that the cylindrical hole in the metal plate is exactly in the middle of the animal's forehead.
- Insert a chisel ending in a round flat tip into it.
- With a considerable effort, hit with a wooden hammer on the chisel. This will drive him to the head up to 25 cm deep.
- Insert a solid probe or willow rod into the resulting hole to completely kill the brain.
- Spend a bleeding.
It is impossible to recognize such a method of slaughtering cattle as rational, since more than one case is known when brain damage does not lead to loss of consciousness. In addition, brains become unsuitable for sale, and meat with incomplete bloodlessness loses its quality indicators.
The Bruno method only took root in France, although it was tested both in Europe and in Russia. Petersburg slaughter workers praised him as slow and troublesome.
Application of the method is possible only in enterprises with automatic slaughter. The process itself is represented by an algorithm of actions:
- Several animals are identified in a cramped passageway.
- The first bull stands on a moving platform, on which his movements are limited by front and rear props.
- The head is firmly fixed between two vertical metal rails.
- The rail platform slides down the ramp, where an iron bar is installed at the end.
- The animal striking its head against it, crushes the skull.
- A carotid artery and jugular veins are cut into a dead bull.
- The site goes back for the next animal.
This method makes the bull’s head and brains unsuitable for sale. Animals are frightened, experiencing stress. From this bleeding does not pass completely, the color and taste of the meat changes.
Sigmund's Way (mask with shooting)
The Sigmund method for slaughtering cattle is very similar to the Bruno method. To implement it, do the following:
- Put a special mask on the animal’s head and tighten it tightly. On the frontal part she has a large massive plate of metal.
- Screw the pistol barrel into the metal part.
- Fire a pistol.
- Cut large blood vessels around the neck to bleed.
The method is fast in execution, does not require special knowledge and extensive experience from the butcher. But a significant drawback is that the sounds made by a shot scare cattle, which leads to stress and a decrease in the quality characteristics of meat.
The method is patented in England and is used to produce meat filled with blood, which the British love very much.
- The cow is stunned by a strong blow to the forehead.
- Pierce the chest between the 4th and 5th rib.
- Air is pumped through a hole with a special fur tool, squeezing the lungs with it. The animal is dying of asphyxiation.
The cattle slaughter method used in England is very cruel. The meat obtained during the English slaughter contains a lot of blood, which reduces the shelf life by many times.
Kalmyk slaughter method
The slaughter method used by the Kalmyks is characterized by the following actions:
- The cow is fixed by tying the horns with a rope.
- One butcher holds the animal, and the second with a precise blow of the hammer of a sledgehammer or ax in the forehead, stuns the cow.
- When the animal has settled enough, one sits on its head, the other butcher cuts the sternum or under the shoulder blade between the 4th and 5th rib of the left side.
- Through the incision, the heart is taken out and the vessels on it are bandaged.
The meat comes from nourished blood. Nomadic peoples really appreciate such a product, serving it to the table in a raw warm form, immediately after the slaughter of a cow.
This cruelty method even surpasses the method of slaughtering cattle from England. Requires special butcher skills throughout the slaughter process.
To carry out the slaughter of a cow in the Russian way, follow the algorithm:
- Tie the rope to the horns, and, passing it between the legs of the animal, pull its head to the floor. Thus, an oval ring, covered by the skin and ligaments, between the nape bone and the first vertebra becomes accessible.
- The butcher, standing in front of the animal, hits with a long dagger from front to back to this place. The bull, losing consciousness, will fall on its side. Preferably on the left.
- With a second blow, the knife is thrust into the lower third of the neck to the side of the heart to reach and damage the circulatory blood vessels.
- Blood is collected in containers and disposed of.
The humanity of the method depends on the time interval between the first knife strike and the second. It is advisable to carry them out simultaneously. The method is quick, not requiring stunning, because the first knife damage is used instead. In addition, the Russian method is considered safe. One person is able to cope with the slaughter of the most ferocious bull.
The meat turns out to be tasty and well stored due to the high-quality bleeding of the carcass.
For centuries, Jews have used their method of slaughtering cattle, and not only in their communities, but also in the territories of Christians, crushing slaughtering for themselves. The Jewish method, prescribed by religion, involves the following course of action when slaughtering a cow:
- The legs are tied to the animal and thrown over, dropping on its side so that it receives a strong blow from the ribs to the ground.
- The helper - always a Christian - throws back the cow's head so that the neck is pulled. Most often, horns are pulled back to the back.
- The cutter with one stroke of the longest longest knife cuts the skin and all components of the neck to the spinal cord. An incision is made between 1 and 2 vertebrae.
- The animal waves its head, scattering jets of blood, convulsive manifestations appear, wheezing is made, and death occurs.
Particular attention in this method of slaughter takes a knife. Its blade should be at least 50 mm wide and 350 mm long. A special sharpening is important, in which the hair is cut, barely touching the blade of the knife. Without fulfilling these conditions, it is forbidden for Jews to eat the meat of a slaughtered animal for cutting.
In favor of their method of slaughtering livestock, Jews have argued that with such a quick dissection of the neck, the brain instantly dies without hemorrhaging into it. Vessels and capillaries do not have time to adapt to a sharp drop in blood pressure and death occurs instantly. This could give reason to consider the Jewish way the most humane of all.
Opponents of the method believe that the animal, when crossing the neck with a knife, experiences wild flour for at least 15-20 seconds. They prove that from this there are head shakes, and both the spinal cord and the central one remain intact.
The method of slaughtering cattle with electricity began to be used by the Americans. He took root in America, Italy and England. To implement the method produce the following manipulations:
- A pair of bare electrodes is brought to the head of the animal, closer to the ear. Electric current stuns the cow.
- In case of loss of consciousness, an incision is made in the neck, with dissection of the yarmine veins and carotid artery.
With this method, the main thing is to correctly set the current strength, because with excessively high rates, the animal dies and blood coagulates inside the carcass. This makes the meat unsuitable for food.
Approximate norms of voltage and duration of its impact on livestock:
- animals up to a year - 70-90 V for 3-5 seconds;
- animals up to 3 years old - 90-100 V for 10-12 seconds;
- older than 3 years - 100-120 V for 17-20 seconds;
- for large bulls - up to 200 V for 25-30 seconds.
The current strength in each case is kept at 1 A. For safety, rubber mats under the feet of fighters and rubber boots are required.
The method relates to the humane, because the animal loses consciousness and no longer feels any action. Meat during slaughter in this way has a specific aftertaste that appears when the current acts on the body.
In the industrial slaughter with the positive conclusion of the veterinarian, the animals are placed on a mobile platform with high sides. The movements of animals are limited by cramped space.
For slaughter, a pneumatic gun is used, operating from compressed air and a special cartridge. With one movement, the device makes a hole in the middle of the cow's forehead, where a steel hook is clogged to disconnect the brain.
The carcass is suspended by its hind legs and its head is cut off.
Bloodletting is possible after the animal’s heart stops completely, until this moment the blood feeds the meat, worsening its quality criteria.
Veterinary slaughter option
The veterinary method of slaughtering cattle is similar to the Russian method. The only difference is that the second blow is stabbed without removing it from the hole, but changing the direction of the impact to the opposite. Thus, the first penetration of the blade occurs from front to back, and the second - from back to front.
This method requires special skills, but it is better to perform it with the help of a specialist veterinarian.
More modern methods of slaughter cattle
At present, the method of stunning animals with carbon dioxide is often used on an industrial scale. To do this, use a special expensive gas chamber. The time required for loss of consciousness varies from 3 to 7 minutes.
The meat with this method differs little in taste from that obtained in other ways, because the animals in any case are frightened and are stressed.
The advantages of this method are the purity of the stunning and the possibility of the simultaneous influence of gas on different age and weight categories of animals.
Mascara processing is important to ensure the suitability of meat for food, its sale, as well as the sale of hides and internal organs.
Bleeding can be carried out in a horizontal way and hanging the carcass, determining it in a vertical position, head down. The second method is more successful and convenient. Blood flows faster under the action of gravity and the process is more qualitative. Skinning and removing the entrails is also more convenient when the carcass of an animal is vertically placed.
To eliminate pollution, the place of slaughter is covered with tarpaulin, boards, film. Provide access to clean water.
Skinning and dressing
Skinning a carcass is called flaying. Skinning a carcass is a simple process, but requires caution and attention. When in a hurry, you can damage it, depriving it of its presentation, and contaminate the meat with microbes.
Flushing of the head goes through a separate stage of work. The ears are cut off and the skin is removed through an incision in the frontal part.
At home, work is carried out with the animal lying horizontally on a straw or wooden flooring:
- The carcass is placed on the back, placing wooden blocks under the sides. The head is cut off and the esophagus remaining on the body is bandaged so that its contents do not stain the meat when cutting.
- A carving knife cuts the skin along from the throat to the anus.
- An annular incision is made on each leg around the hooves.
- On the inner side of the limbs from the top to the hooves, the skin is cut.
- Wielding a knife and prying the skin with his fingers, remove it from the carcass. They begin to process the front legs, after which they move to the neck and chest, moving towards the hind limbs.
- Remove the skin from the sides to the spine, and then pull it from the neck to the back, cutting if necessary with a knife.
Watch the video below on how to skin cattle:
Extraction of the insides
Removing the insides after skinning is called internment. It must be carried out no later than 1.5 hours after the slaughter in order to prevent the spread of pathogenic microflora from the intestine through the meat. With a horizontal interior, the work proceeds according to the following algorithm:
- With careful movements, to avoid breaking through the intestines, remove the genitals of the bull and the udder of the cow.
- Dissect along the sternum, esophagus so that with careless movement does not damage the inside.
- Cut the pubic and pelvic bones with an hatchet.
- Very carefully start extracting the insides from above, cutting off the diaphragm near the ribs.
- Take out the spleen and liver. Be careful not to damage the gallbladder.
- Remove the pancreas with the stomach, followed by the intestines.
- Rinse the hollow carcass with cold water to rinse off any residual blood.
- Strip and rinse the bloodied upper parts of the carcass with water.
How is cattle interned, see the video below:
Sawing is conveniently carried out on a large table or other flat clean surface.
The carcass of a cow is sawn lengthwise into two parts. The muscles near the spine are dissected, and the cut is done slightly away from the spinal cord so that it remains intact. It is possible to divide the carcass into 4 parts. To do this, the longitudinal halves are cut along between 12 and 13 ribs.
The inside is washed with water and dried with a rag. Water is removed from the outside, raking it with the blunt side of the knife blade down.
The prepared carcass must be kept at a temperature of 0 to -4 degrees, so that a dried crust forms, which extends the shelf life of the meat.
The pre-slaughter permission of the veterinarian does not guarantee that the meat will be safe to eat. Visual inspection of the animal cannot diagnose diseases in the initial stages and their hidden forms. Therefore, after slaughter, meat must be submitted for examination.
At the end of the analysis and its favorable results, a veterinary and sanitary certificate is issued that permits the sale and sale of hides, carcasses and internal organs of a slaughtered animal, and the meat is branded.
Otherwise, in the presence of diseases, the animal is disposed of by burning or burial in a cattle cemetery, and the slaughterhouse and tools are sanitized.
Tips & Warnings
- Pay attention to the color and texture of meat and internal organs when cutting carcasses. There should not be any inclusions, spots and formations. In case of doubt, a veterinarian must inspect the carcass and place.
- Do not tackle slaughter if you know little about the technique of work and do not have experience. Call a specialist for help, and stay as an assistant yourself.
- Use only high-quality ropes to tie and fix the animal during slaughter. This is especially true for those methods where cow agony is possible. In this condition, it can cause injuries and injuries to a person.
- Pay particular attention to the sharpening of knives and their types. So, for the slaughter often need long blades, and when cutting the carcass it is more convenient to use knives with a medium or short blade. For skinning, the blade should not be particularly sharp.
Downhole activities are always difficult physically and emotionally. If you doubt your strength, entrust the matter to professional fighters. So you ease the fate of the animal and save your nerves. The specialist will tell you which method of slaughter it is advisable to perform, and will execute it without any problems. At the same time, the quality of the meat will be preserved, and the correct processing and cutting of the carcass will preserve the implementation look.