Body Condition Scoring Selection Of Ideal Animals Biology Essay


Scoring means assessing different body parts of animals to check whether animal is good for dairy purpose and mutton\beef, or not, and to assess the need to slaughter the animal.

Now a question assess why we score the animals's body? We score the animal body for different processes.

The most important purpose is to check the amount of fat in animal body.

The most important region\part where we look for amount of fat is

1. Loin

1. Loin:-

In loin, we consider area b\w hip bone and last rib.


We check level of fat in subcutaneous tissue.

To check the balance between feed intake & energy level

Loss of Energy:-

3. It is used to check the comparison between the animals whether it is good foe meat and dairy purpose. We also check this animal for its state of health-absence or presence of any diseased condition.

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4. To check the management of animal at different physiological stages e.g. at wearing, breeding, calving etc.


The objectives of body condition scoring are:-

To increase the production and reproduction in those animals.

By increasing the production, we mean increasing milk production. If we have to use for doing purpose and we need an increased meat production for. IF we want to heap then for beef production, then increase reproduction means to use such type of animals which have good genetic makeup\potential.

To check the previous feed that check the type of feed, supply of feed whether good for animal consumption or not, amount of feed that how much is supplied to animal.

To determine the feed requirement and animal that how much the animals need to maintain their optimum body conditions.

To asses the animal s' health condition, whether the animals are healthy or not.

To check the animal s' management during wearing, breeding and calking.

To check for human behavior toward animal because it is important for their welfare.

Body scoring Of Dairy Cow:-

Body pars of cow:-

Animals require different types of mutients for different purposes especially for:

Body maintenance.

Location for dairy purpose.

The growth.


Also necessary for foetal development.

Graph Explanation:-

In this fig, it is explained that if animal is at maintained\mid gestation body score will be 4.5, or at the location of parturition the body score will be 5.5, At breeding body condition score will be 5, at location body score will be 4.5 and at wearing body score will be 4.5. If the above mentioned conditions are not filled. It means animal is not in good or healthy state, Then we need to be concerned about animal health concentration on animals health.

"Purpose of keeping the dairy anima s' the production of milk, and the beef or mutton type animal to get good or more amount of meat from healthy animal."

In order to scoring the dairy type animal we have to keep several paints.

%age for general appearance =15%

%age for general dairy character = 20%

%age for general body capacity =10%

%age for general mammary system=40 %

%age for general legs and feet =15 %

Selection Criteria and grading:-

If %age 90-100 then animal consider excellent.

If %age 85-89 then consider very good animal.

If 80-84 then consider animal is good plus.

If 75-79 then animals just good.

If 65-74 then animal is just fair.

If 50-64 then animal is in poor condition and animal needs proper case

1. General appearance:-

Breed Characteristics:-

In breed characteristics we consider the structure of animal, which includes head should be neat and clean. Muzzle should be broad be strong.


Stature means height of animal, It also includes length of bone

iii.Front End:-

It should accompany with front legs that should be straight, wide and squarely arranged

iv. Shoulder blade:-

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Shoulder blade be against\opposite to the wall of chest.

v. Back:-

Back should be straight and strong.

vi. Loin:-

Loin should be wide and strong.

vii. Rump:-

Rump should be long, wide and up to the pin bone.

viii. Thurls:-

Thurls should be wide and should be in center of pin bone and hip bone.

ix. Tail Head:-

Tail head should be little bit between pin bones, and there should be no coarseness.

Dairy Character:-


Neck should be long, clean and completely blended into shoulders.


Withers should be soup and prominent.


Ribs should be wide, flat, and deep.


Skin should be thin, loose and pliable.

Body Capacity:-


Chest should be deep and wide.


Barrel should be long, deep and wide.


Flank should be long and wide.

Mammary System:-

Udder depth:-

Udder depth should be moderate, should be at the level of hock joint.

Teat Placement:-

It should be squarely place on every quarter.

iii.Rear Udder:-

It should be wide and high, should attach from top to bottom and udder floor should be round.

iv.Udder Cleft:-

It should be supported by strong suspensor ligaments.

v.Fore Udder:-

It should be moderate length and of sufficient capacity.


It should be cylindrical the size should be uniform, and length should be medium.

vii. Udder Balance and texture:-

Udder floor should be balanced when viewed from sides.

Legs and Feet:-

Front Legs:-

They should be at steep angle, well rounded with closed toes.

Hind Legs:-

They should be straight, wide and squarely placed.


It should round and flexible, having no coarseness.

iv. Pastein:-

It should short and strong and should also flexible.


It should be at steep angle, and rounded.

Body Scoring\Grading:-

For body scoring we have to keep the body part of animal which contains large amount of fat. The most important part fat is accumulated

i . Loin

ii..Tail head


Body (Condition) Scoring =1:-


In loin, the edges of transverse process will be shoup.

Description in loin:-

Tail Head:-

In tail portion, there will be fatty tissue between skin and pelvis area.

Body score 2:-

Loin Portion:-

Ends of transverse processes will be round. Upper surface can be felt by applying pressure. Depression can be seen easily on loin.


Pin bone will be prominent, tail will have shallow cavity. There may be little bit fatty tissue around tail head.

Body Score 3:-

Body Score 3.5:-

Loin Area:-

Thick layer of tissue is present on the top of transverse process. Depression on loin area is almost filled.

Tail Head:-

Tail is completely filled with fatty tissue. Pelvis cannot be easily felt because of presence of fatty tissue. The best body condition is 3.5, because in this there is normal.

Loin Area:-

When pressure is applied on the edges of transverse process, we will feel that there is a thick layer of tissue on its top. There will be a small depression on loin area.

Tail Head:-

Tail is covered with fatty tissue, but pelvis can be easily seen.

Body Score 4:-

Loin Area:-

Depression on loin areas felt in score 3 and seen that transverse process is filled with thick layer of tissue.

Tail Head:-

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Fatty tissue folds are present. Tail head is completely filled with fatty tissue.

Body Score 5:-

Loin Area:-

Transverse processes are completely with fatty tissue\ fat.

Tail Head:-

Tail and pelvis completely covered with fatty tissue.

How to score the beef type animal?-

Beef Type:-

For beef type, we have to check the skeleton structure/muscles of animals. In this score 1 represents too thin or emaciated animal and score 9 too much obese animal.


Body Score 1:-

In this score animal is too thin.

Skeletal muscle are easily seen by eye.

There will be no absence of muscle tissue and fat.

At this stage animal is considered to be under nourished

Body Score 2:

Very thin.

Skeletal muscles can easily be seen.

Muscle tissues are present

Fat not externally seen.

Body Score 3:-

Animal is thin.

In upper skeleton portion that is most prominent is vertebra, hips,pin bones etc.

Muscle tissues are abudent.

Fat is not obvious.

Body score 4:-

In skeletal portion, margin o skeletal muscle,

Hook and pain bone can not be easily seen exerting pressure on it.

Large amount of tissue seen.

A lot of fat present .rips are covered with fat.

Body Score 5:-

Ribcage can be seen.

Hook and pin bone can be easily seen but not so abundant.

Muscle tissues are are approximately more.

Shoulder completely covered with fat.

Ribs are also covered with fat.

Body Score 6:-

Rib cage little bit seen.

Hook and pin bone is also less prominent.

Presence of muscle tissue is more.

Shoulder is also filled with fat.

Ribs are also filled with fat which also covers the rump portion area.

Body Score 7:-

At score 7, animal is said to be over conditioned.

It is very difficult to identify the skeletal structures.

Large amount of fat is present at shoulder or tail head.

Body score 8:-

Animal is considered over conditioned.

Skeletal muscles are not easily seen.

There is deposition of fat at rump portion.

Fat also covers the shoulder and brisket region.

Body Score 9:-

Animals are considered to be "obese".

Brisket is too heavy.

In all the above scoring, the best one is body score of 6 because in this hook and pin bone are not so sufficient muscular fat and tissue.

Body Score of Goat:-

While scoring. We have to keep following things in mind. General appearance, %age for this is 30 % and mammary system: 30 %, Dairy Character: 20 %, body Capacity: 20 %

General Appearance:-


Means height of animals of bones.


It should be medium in length, Muzzle should be broad, Nostrils should be open and large, and Jaw should be strong.

iii. Back:-

Back should be strong, vertebrae should be straight.


Rump should be long, wide and leveled.

v.Front Legs:-

They should be wide apart and straight.

vi.Hind Legs:-

They must be perpendicular from hock saint to pastern, pastern must be of medium length.

vii. Feet:-

Feet must be short and straight.

Mammary System:-


Udder must be long and wide.

ii.Rear attachment:-

It should be high and wide. It must be balanced and symmetrical.

iii.Fore Attachment:-

It must be blended smoothly with body.


Teats must be uniform and of proper shape, length and size. They must be cylindrical. They must be arranged squarely.

Dairy Character:-


Neck must be long and lean; it must be smoothly blended with shoulders and brisket.


Withers must be useful defined and have wedge shape.


Ribs should be wide, broad and long.


Flank must be deep, arched.


Thighs must be flat when viewed from side. They should be wide apart when viewed from rear side.


Skin must be loose and pliable.

Body Capacity:-


It must be deep, strongly supported, ribs must be wide.

ii.Heart Girth:-

It must be large, forribs must be well sprung, and chest floor must be wide between front legs.

Extensive muscular growth areas:-

Hind quarters




Mostly observe spinuous process, Transverse process and eye muscle for scoring.


Body Score 1: -

Poor condition

When observe spinous process, it will be prominent and sharp.

Transverse process should be soup can be felt

There will be not fat covering and on eye muscles.

Body score 2:-

Animal is said poor condition also called "thin".

At 5 pinous processes, it is prominent but so smooth.

At transverse process it will be smooth, rounded, can be easily seen by exerting very low pressure.

On eye muscle it will be moderate, there will be little fat covering.

Body Scorning 3:-

It is said to be in "good condition".

When we observe spinous process, there will be small elevation. it will be rounded.

At transverse process it is smooth, when apply little pressure we can feed over the ends.

There will be moderate fat covering

Body Score 4:-

By applying pressure on spinous process we feel hard line at the back. It is said that animal's "fatty".

At this score eye muscles are thickly covered;

Body Score 5:-

Animal said "very fat" animal or "obese" animal.

Both spinuous as well as transverse process can not be felt by applying pressure.

There will be thick fat covering on eye muscle.

So the best score of goat is score 3 as the animal said "good condition animal".

It is ideal goat figure.

It is seen that loin is long, deep and wide as mentioned earlier.

Rump is called leveled.

Leg is also well muscled.

Body is deep, Neck is also trimmed and long.

Legs and feet also squarely arranged.

Front legs are wide apart or well settled

Pastern also straight and strong.

Body Score of Sheep:-

Body score of sheep also same as scoring of goat same ratings. If the body weight of sheep is 13% the body score will be 3-3.5 that consider as moderate body score.

(Body part of sheep)

Body condition of ewe change according to the production cycle.

Body scoring of Mutton type animal:-

For the mutton type animal we have to examine;


If body weight of ewe is 13 % then body score will belie 3-3., so according to variation in production cycle body score will also vary.


Skin should be bright, free from dust up.


Fleece must be pure, uniformal distributed long and dense fine and bright.


It must be fine and broad in case of roam and nostrils should be open.


Face should be short it must ne fine in case of ewe and strong in case of ram.


Eyes must be neat and clean, free from viscous.


Forehead must be broad in case of ewe, and properly wool should be there.


Ears should be fine, must be in proper length properly covered.


Neck must be short in shoulders.


Shoulder should broad completely compact.


It is necessary that forelegs should straight not in curved form must short.


Feet must strong.


Chest must be deep, wide.


Brisket must be broad.


Back must be well fleshed, completely straight and broad its surface and with medium length.


It must be well fleshed broad and straight.


Rump should be long, properly leveled and wide.


It must be filled with muscle.

Hind Legs:-

It must be straight and short, bone should be smooth.

How to Examine:-

At first check the length that starts from last rib and ends at the back of dock.

After that determine length ,check width,loin depth and examine how much its thicknss,depth,firmness and muscular development.

Then check length,width of rump portion.

After this examine the volume and depth of muscle on leg portion,and check musculature on its legs.

Graph shows that breeding body weight must be 145lb and then body score will be 3.25, when lambing the body weight must be 165lb and body score will be weaning body weight must be 140lb and body score will be 2.5 to 3.0

Selection of ideal sheep:-

We have to select that sheep that rump must be long and leveled. Head should be up not facing downward, chest must be wide, body must be deep. There will be a lot of muscles on neck mean legs must be well musculature. Bone must be in proper size and structure, should be of good shape.

Body Score of Camel:-

Scoring of camel can be done by estimation of fat that is present in the hump portion. Camel stores its energy in form of fat in the hump sack and may be in internal linings.

Other species like cattle and buffalo store energy in form of fat in the sub cutaneous tissue, some of the internal linings and most of muscles but in camel it is stored only in hump sack or some of internal linings.

How to Score The Camel:-

Score 1:-

At this score backbone is more prominent, no need to exert pressure to feel backbone presence.

There will be no fat at brisket portion.

At this score it is considered that animals under nourished, it is necessary to show some concentration on camel s' nutrition.

Score 2:-

At this score we can easily seen backbone, ribs are prominent

Briskets are firm.

Score 3:-

It is a good score.

We can easily feel the back bone but it is not be so much prominent.

We can feel the ribs.

Can be seen the brisket until and unless animal not undergone the movement.

Score 4:-

Considered "Somewhat overweight".

Backbone cannot easily felt, Ribs cannot be felt

Score 5:-

In this score 5 animal is said "obese camel".

Backbone and ribs can not be seen or felt.

Can not be felt by applying pressure.

This type of animal has some losses in case of production and reproduction.

The best Score is 3 because in this score animal has normal fat and muscle at backbone and rib portion Camel neither said emaciated nor obese/fatty animal.


Throughout discussion we can conclude that it is economically important to know that health status of animal at different physiological stages. If we don't show and concentration on animal's health economic losses will occur.

Good management practices should follow during breeding, calving/lambing, lactation.Body scoring is also important for animal's welfare.