This article discusses why rubber matting can be a superior alternative to grooved concrete in cattle yards. The ideal choice for you will vary based on several factors, including your specific cattle handling requirements, the type of cattle you’re managing, and your budget.
Comfort for Cattle
If ensuring a comfortable environment for your cattle is a priority, rubber mats stand out as the superior choice. These mats provide a softer surface that helps alleviate stress and discomfort for the animals. This not only promotes better cooperation from the cattle during handling but also reduces the risk of injury for both the animals and the handler.
Traction is an essential factor in cattle facilities to prevent slipping accidents. Both rubber mats and grooved concrete can offer suitable traction. However, grooved concrete tends to become slippery when wet and its efficiency decreases with age and wear.
On the other hand, the right style of rubber mats retains traction, even when wet. Not all rubber mats are created equal though, so it’s crucial to select a high-quality matting with raised lugs to prevent the hooves from slipping.
A high-quality rubber mat can last for several years, making it a durable option. On the contrary, low-quality mats may deteriorate within weeks. So, invest wisely in a mat that will serve you and your cattle for a long time.
Hygiene is another critical aspect to consider. Rubber mats are typically easier to clean than grooved concrete, which can help improve hygiene standards and lower the risk of disease transmission in your facilities. Whether you’re using concrete or rubber mats, it’s crucial to clean them regularly to ensure their durability and maintain hygiene.
Noise can cause distress among cattle. Rubber mats have the added advantage of reducing noise levels in the handling area, creating a more calming environment for your cattle.
Installation and Environmental Impact
Rubber mat installation can be a quick and easy process as they can be laid over existing concrete. On the other hand, installing grooved concrete may require more extensive preparation.
Moreover, rubber mats can be more environmentally friendly than grooved concrete, especially if they are made from recycled materials and are recyclable at the end of their life span.
Maintenance and Cost
Rubber mats often require less maintenance than grooved concrete, particularly if they are vulcanized. Though rubber matting may come with a higher initial cost compared to grooved concrete, the investment can pay off over time through improved productivity, reduced maintenance costs, and other benefits.
The type of cattle you’re working with can also influence your decision. Most animals will prefer the softer, more stable surface of rubber mats over the harder, noisier, and potentially more slippery grooved concrete. Always observe your cattle and consider their behavior when making your decision.
Ultimately, the best choice for your cattle yard will depend on your specific needs and priorities. Take into account factors like comfort, traction, durability, hygiene, and noise, and opt for a product that will provide the best overall value for your operation.
We hope you’ve found this information helpful in determining what surface will serve you and your animals best in your cattle yard. If you would like to know more about our specially designed cattle mats that provide grip, comfort, and durability, please check out our YoungStar mat page.