Performance traits, hoof mineral composition, and hoof characteristics of bulls in a 112-day postweaning feedlot performance test

By Brown, A. H. and Johnson, Z. B. and Kellogg, D. W. and Perkins, J. L. and Phillips, J. M. and Sugg, J. L., American Journal of Veterinary Research, 1996
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Objective-To evaluate relations between hoof and performance data from bulls fed in a 112-day standardized postweaning feedlot performance test. Animals and Design-Breeds included were Angus (n = 20), Brangus (n = 19), Hereford (n = 31), and Simmental (n = 53). Hoof measurements, scores, and a 0.5-g hoof tissue sample were obtained from the right fore-foot of bulls on days 1 and 112 of 4 tests conducted in 3 locations in Arkansas. Data were analyzed, using least squares ANOVA. The model used included an overall mean, breed, farm of origin within breed, initial age, and initial weight within breed and residual. Residual and canonical correlations of the traits studied were calculated. Results-Residual correlations were found between some hoof minerals. Canonical correlations between performance traits and hoof minerals, between hoof characteristics and hoof minerals, and between hoof characteristics and performance traits were 0.62 and 0.45 (P < 0.05), 0.54 and 0.40 (P < 0.05), and 0.56 (P < 0.01) and 0.26 (P > 0.05), respectively. Conclusions-These data suggest that a relation exists between performance traits and hoof mineral composition and hoof characteristics and mineral composition. The visual scoring system for these data did not genetically separate bulls on the basis of claw quality. Clinical Implications-By selecting bulls with high claw quality, cattle producers are decreasing the chances of premature culling because of hoof laminitis. Therefore, by obtaining hoof measurements and mineral composition in a feedlot performance test, producers should have the tools to select bulls for increased lifetime performance
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