Hide Defects of Feedlot Cattle: Assessment of Cattle Management, Breed Type, Sex, Live Market Weight, and Source Factors on Hide Quality


W. T. Wright
C. R. Richardson
M. A. Bonds
G. V. Pollard
P. O. Sudharkaran
A. M. Gonzalez
S. P. Martinez


Twenty groups of finished feedlot cattle (thirteen steer groups, seven heifer groups) of known origin, breed type, sex and implant status were studied after marketing to determine the type and extent of hide defects as related to days on feed, live market weight, and hot carcass weight. Origin of cattle did not significantly influence the five hide characteristics evaluated (hide defects score, hide vein score, healed scratches, ringworm, and warts). Live weight and sex influenced the weight of the hides (P < 0.05), with steers being heavier and having heavier hides. Days on feed increased (P = 0.06) the amount of vein damage observed on the hides but was not sex related. Results from this study indicate that under typical commercial cattle feeding practices in Texas, hide defects differ among cattle under the same management and are related to the days on feed in the feedlot, which influences final market weight and degree of finish.