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Wisconsin Dairymen's Association / Fortieth annual report of the Wisconsin Dairymen's Association : held at Beloit, Wis., November, 1911. Report of the proceedings, annual address of the president, and interesting essays and discussions relating to the dairy interests
(1912)

Scribner, E. H.
Address to young men taking part in the boys' judging contest,   pp. 28-35 PDF (1.8 MB)


Page 30


30              Fortieth Annual Report of the
if we didn't have constitution. We must have health, that rugged thrift
that enables us to do something and that is why we are placed here
on this earth-to do something.
To be profitable to us, the dairy cow should work and work all the
time. I don't mean by that giving milk three hundred and sixty-five
days in the year. Of course she should have a short period of rest.
Constitution is indicated in a good many ways. The general ap-
pearance of a cow goes a good ways. The head is a strong indication
of constitution. I want a wide muzzle on a cow as it shows strength
of constitution and strength in feeding qualities as well. I want to
see open nostrils, because the usefulness of the animal is dependent
in a large measure upon the air she breathes. If she has a little, re-
stricted nose with a small opening, the amount of air she breathes is
limited. There is nothing which purifies the blood except the oxygen
from the air, and many times our cows are handicapped because they
are kept in badly ventilated barns.
To me, the eye is an indication of constitution. When I see an eye
that is dull and languid and sunken into the head, it is a sign of not
much strength of constitution.
The heart has a great deal of hard work to do, so I want to see an
animal have plenty of room in her heart girth. The other day at Mil-
waukee it was my privilege to judge certain classes of cows, and in one
class particularly,-young heifers,-I found one animal that had im-
mense capacity of barrel, but just forward of the barrel her heart
girth was very small around, and that to me was a serious fault,
an indication of lack of constitution. We want the particular place
where the heart and lungs are situated to be strong, to have plenty of
room. The heart and lungs have been proven to be larger in the
dairy animal than in the beef animal, and that is indicated not only in
the depth but in the width as well. When you boys are going to
judge cows look at that particularly; seec that the cow has plenty of
constitution as shown in the heart girth, in the open nostrils and in
the bright eye.
Constitution is perhaps indicated by the hair, if her coat is standing,
her hair pointing toward her head, it is an indication that something
is wrong.
When I step into the show-ring to judge cattle, the first general
appearance of the cow is a pretty strong point with me. Many times
I see judges go over a cow in careful detail, over and over again until
they get confused and really don't know where they are at. When I
go to judge a cow, I don't want to take her all in at one glance, I want
to look at her head, at her clean-cut neck, at her withers over the
shoulders. I don't want those withers real sharp because that is a


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