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Cattle Yard Layout Design: 7 Things to Consider

Cattle Yard Layout Design

The design of a cattle yard is arguably one of the most important elements for the safe and efficient handling of livestock. Designing a cattle yard is crucial for reducing the stress upon cattle and also for developing high-quality livestock. Designing a cattle yard is not a simple project as it requires a keen understanding of small elements such as choice of materials, design, size of the cattle, their behaviors, and keeping them in a flow. 

Regardless of the head of cattle you rear on your property, it is important to design a safe cattle yard that makes livestock management significantly easier. By having the right infrastructure on hand, even small cattle yards can manage livestock with utmost safety and hygiene. A poorly designed cattle yard can increase the risk of accident or injury to both cattle and farm handlers thus, making it a task to invest in a modern and well-designed cattle yard.

7 Must-Know Tips for Designing Cattle Yards

Consider these things for better livestock management on your farm.

1. Organized Flow

There is much more to the Cattle yard design than just handling them in a group for a while. Since being pushed through a yard is unnatural to cattle, limiting the duration of time between yard and pen is important as this will reduce the total stress on animals. Layouts that better incorporate the flow of cattle through their yard, generally have inbound and outbound areas that have different entry and exit points.

2. Natural Materials

The cattle yard should be made comfortable for cattle and for that, the yard needs to be as natural as possible. The panels and gates should be sturdy, lightweight, and flexible which makes it easy to maneuver. Our panels are thoughtfully made sag-resistant to ensure lasting results with- maintenance setup.

3. Yard Location & Layout

Farmers sometimes set up the cattle yard on the spare space but you can’t expect a home built on sand to last long. Similarly, it is important to plan a layout at a proper location that allows the user to easily access the location from all directions and has sufficient drainage, shade, access to water, and be in reasonable proximity to any farm buildings. Plan a layout that allows the cattle to freely roam around the yard in a comfortable flow.

4. Operator Safety

If animals are stressed, it can be dangerous for the operator to efficiently manage them. Besides making efforts to reduce the stress of animals, it is important to understand the natural behavior of the cattle and plan the layout accordingly. As the feeling of being trapped, unfamiliar surroundings, and other factors affect the natural behavior of cattle, make sure to have a layout that allows the operator to safely manage the livestock.

5. Drafting Options

Drafting is the process of separating cattle into smaller lots for easier management purposes. Try having a layout that allows the operator and cattle to have a safe movement. Try these:

  • Get drafting set up that keeps cattle and people separate.
  • Go for non-slip catwalks for cattle handlers and have automatic gates that can be operated from both inside and outside of the yard.
  • Working with the appropriate number of handlers in proportion to the cattle.
  • Alternatively, use a portable cattle yard.

6. Spacious Pens

If cattle are forced into small pens, then they are more likely to have claustrophobic behavior and be stressed throughout the process. As cattle have a natural tendency to gather around their handler, circular pens can prove to be more efficient than any other pens.  Also, Cattle like to graze in open fields with large amounts of space, thus having pens that allow this can be of more help.

7. Good Drainage

It goes without saying that it is crucial for the cattle yard to maintain a healthy environment with good odor. Cattle produce a significant amount of manure, and if the drainage is not appropriate, it can lead to health problems in cattle.


Cattle yard design should reduce the stress upon cattle and also help the manpower to manage them in the best way possible. Involving an experienced cattle yard supplier like Gold Coast Racking in a design process enables Australian farmers to design a cattle yard that will last decades.

Apart from warehouse storage solutions, we also provide expert advice and services in planning the layout of the cattle yards and designing the same. 

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