Locomotion Scoring of Dairy Cattle
Locomotion scoring is based on the observation of cows standing and walking (gait), with special emphasis on their back posture. This system is intuitive and, therefore, easy to learn and implement. Use of locomotion scoring is effective for early detection of claw (hoof) disorders, monitoring prevalence of lameness, comparing the incidence and severity of lameness between herds and identifying individual cows for functional claw (hoof) trimming.
Animal observations should be made on a flat surface that provides good footing for cows. Cows scoring 2 or 3 should be examined and trimmed to prevent more serious problems. Trimming should be done by a competent trimmer with the goal of returning the claws to functional weight bearing and conformation.
Locomotion Score 1
Locomotion Score 2
Locomotion Score 3
Locomotion Score 4
Locomotion Score 5
* Adapted from Sprecher, D.J.; Hostetler, D.E.; Kaneene, J.B. 1997. Theriogenology 47:1178-1187 and contribution from Cook, N.B., University of Wisconsin.