Everyone knows cattle need water, food and sufficient space to roam. Keeping cattle cool during summer is just as integral to their wellbeing. Most herds of cattle across the country spend most of their time outside. Temperature regulation is an essential part of keeping a herd healthy, strong and comfortable. Cows can’t regulate their internal temperatures the same way humans do. Their bodies heat and cool along with the outdoors. Exceedingly warm temperatures can result in a serious condition known as heat stress. Prolonged exposure to warm temperatures can have serious and long-lasting health effects. Temperatures over 90 degrees can be detrimental to their lactation and conception, while 100 degrees can be fatal for some breeds.
This is why many ranchers and dairy operators have turned to shade structures as a cost-effective, durable and efficient way to keep cattle cool. Let’s take a closer look at the benefits of using shade structures in Houston, TX for cattle.
You can’t air condition the outdoors. On the other hand, it’s too expensive to keep cows inside in air-conditioned pens all day, between the cost of cooling and the fact that it eliminates their chance to graze in the open. Shade structures solve this problem. A professionally installed shade structure will cool the air by up to 25 degrees and block approximately 97 percent of dangerous UV rays. Most structures are at least 10 feet tall to allow for consistent airflow. This is critical to the cows’ health, as it ensures the water in the soil will still be able to evaporate, reducing the likelihood of the spread of hoof and mouth disease.
Built to last
Shade structures are built out of durable materials specially designed to withstand the constant abuse of the outdoors. The structures are also engineered to avoid shrinking, stay flexible in a wide range of temperatures and withstand high winds. Cleaning is a breeze, too—simply hose down the top, sides and interior of the structure before using soap and water to scrub away any stubborn stains. A professionally-installed shade structure should last for more than 10 years with regular maintenance.
Proper placement is especially important for shade structures. Ideally, a structure should be installed in a place where the wind can easily pass through to provide sufficient cooling for the cattle. Some spots, such as a hillside, are ideal for the wind, but could be compromised by erosion over time. Your installer can work with you to identify the perfect spot that maximizes comfort, while also ensuring the structure will last for years to come.
Shade structures are one of the most effective ways to keep your cattle both safe and cool. Call ABC Awning Company today if you’re interested in learning more about installing a top-quality shade structure at your farm or agricultural property. Our family-owned and operated business has been creating custom shade structures and patio shades in Houston, TX since 1968. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation with one of our experts!