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It represents the first global consensus on hoof injury identification practices, naming convention and record keeping. The adoption of homogeneous terminology throughout the world will facilitate monitoring and evaluation of both the prevalence and the economic impact of the various injuries.

Always remember that improper treatment of the hooves in the cattle, including horses, is among the major reasons that cause the premature loss of an animal. Here at Victorian Hoof Care Services we’ll be happy to assist you.

The correct identification is essential

Hoof lesions in milk cattle are classified into two categories: infectious and non-infectious. Effective treatment of hoof injuries begins with the evaluation of the category with the highest prevalence in a particular herd. Since corrective action plans must be appropriate for the category of existing injuries, proper identification of injuries is essential.

Single letter abbreviation, global application

In the poster “Identifying Hoof Injuries in Milk Cattle” a single letter abbreviation is systematically used for each injury. Traditionally, the two most common injury identification systems (AABP and ABC) are based on two-letter abbreviations; however, the practice of record keeping works more effectively with single-letter abbreviations due to space limitations for characters in registration programs. With the universal single letter abbreviation system for each lesion, the prevalence of lesions worldwide can be tracked and evaluated more accurately.

Injuries to the most common hooves in milk cattle

The following is a summary of the names of the lesions and the common signs of the 14 lesions of the hoof, infectious and non-infectious, most common in milk cattle. The single letter abbreviation of the lesion appears in parentheses after the name of the lesion. The affected area  of the hoof in each lesion is also added as a reference, since this allows the type of lesion to be related to the particular area of the hoof where it occurs each lesion, which translates into a more precise identification of the lesion.

Cows are subjected to exploitation for their milk, meat and skin. So that we can dispose of all this in abundance and at low prices, the cows are raised with intensive livestock methods and their lives are manipulated without respect, totally against nature:

They are fed with concentrated and animal feeds despite being ruminants with a digestive system designed to graze, to digest and transform large amounts of cellulose. In addition, the feeds are contaminated, and contain remains of corpses of their own species.

They are forced to give birth from fifteen months of age, through embryo transplantation. That is, cows of more value are stimulated to ovulate by hormones, and then they are artificially inseminated. When the embryo is small, it is transferred to a lower value nurse.

The cow that produces embryos is forced to collect 6 embryos every month and a half. When they stop, the calf is removed three days after birth (thus breaking the strong emotional bonds between them, depriving the mother of her offspring and her not only of her mother, but also of her natural food, since she should breastfeed for six months).

They are milked intensively, forcing them to secrete 30 liters of milk a day (when it is natural for them to secrete 3 liters to breastfeed their young). That’s why two out of ten cows are lame. It also gives rise to important and frequent mastitis, which transfer pus and antibiotics to milk. Likewise, the lactation time is prolonged from six to ten and a half months, and after six or eight weeks they are again inseminated, since to continue giving milk they have to give birth again. They will be milked even during the next gestation period.

Both cows and stallions live crammed and in narrow wooden compartments where they are not allowed to make any movement, with the head attached to a watering hole. In the case of being for the production of white veal (which is highly appreciated in some European countries, and its main suppliers are Castilla-León, Galicia and Aragon), they are deprived of sunlight and fed with a liquid artificial.

All subsist on the basis of antibiotics and hormones and in spite of the feeding totally inadequate for their needs.

The animals (most of the 81 million cows in the European Union alone) live three or four years, due to the wear and tear of the diseases they suffer and the exhaustion to which their organism has been subjected. In case of living more years, their yields would be lower and the meat of worse quality, so they are sent to the slaughterhouse, for meat or feed. The life of the cow in its natural cycle would have been about twenty years.

We have forgotten ethics with animals, we believe that they are only “things” at our service. We do not want to attend to the extreme suffering that they undergo to satisfy our habits and desires, since not our needs.

However, the great alteration of natural processes has consequences that cover all levels of the food chain, and an example of this is mad cow disease.

Mad cow disease

It is bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), a degenerative and fatal disease of the central nervous system of cows. It is produced by a prion (protein capable of causing an infection) mutated, from the offal of sheep suffering from scarp, which are added to the cows’ feed, along with other animal wastes.

Its human equivalent is Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, which causes the gradual destruction of the spinal cord and brain, presenting sponge-like alterations.


This disease showed us once again the proliferation of legal and illegal dangerous substances used in the exploitation of animals destined for our food (of which the degeneration to which we expose the life of the cow is only an example). And he once again exposed the hypocrisy and lack of scruples of those who should ensure our health and our information.

Here at Victorian Hoof Care Services you can forget about issues such as limping because we will take care of cattle’s hooves properly and help you keep your cow healthy and strong for dairy production.