Electric prods or “hot shots” are a valuable tool for handling cattle in processing facilities.
They can be used to move resistant cattle forward without causing tissue damage which tail twisting or prodding with sharp objects can cause. However, hot shots are also one of the most misused tools as well.
They should be placed in handy proximity to the chute, where they can be easily accessed when needed and put back. This will reduce unneeded use, and extend the life of the hot shot as well.
If you have to use a hot shot on 25% or more of the animals (one in four animals) then you should seriously reevaluate your facilities and or crew. 25% of the herb is the upper limit and applies more to feedlots and slaughter plants.
Ranch use should generally be much lower.
Responsibly using the hot shot will improve your cattle handling and decrease stress on cattle. It will also help preserve the right to use this valuable tool on American ranches and feedlots.