Livestock Handling Systems, Cattle Corrals, Stockyards, and Races

Permission is granted to reproduce information on for educational purposes.

This section of Grandin.Com contains drawings of cattle corral designs with curved races. Curved cattle chutes are more efficient for handling cattle because they take advantage of the natural behavior of cattle. Cattle move through curved races more easily because they have a natural tendency to go back to where they came from. In the computer aided drawing section there are layout drawings of cattle yard designs for both large and small ranches and feedlots. There are also drawings of a cattle loading ramp for trucks, diagonal stockyard pens for cattle, and detail drawings of a single file race and cattle dip vat. If you are planning to build new corrals or other cattle handling facilites you can download blueprints of cattle pen layouts that will reduce stress on cattle and improve handling efficiency.

Handling Facility Layout Rules:

  1. The crowd pen must always be level.
  2. If the system includes a ramp, it should be located within the single file chute.
  3. An animal standing in the crowd pen must be able to see 2 to 3 body lengths up the single file chute before it curves. This will facilitate entry into the chute.

Example Drawings for Cattle Ranches (or Properties) and Slaughter Plant Facilities for Cattle and Pigs

CAD Drawings of Cattle Corral Designs

Non Slip Flooring for Livestock Handling

Directions for laying out Curved Cattle Handling Facilities on ranches and feedlots

Directions for laying out Curved Cattle Handling Facilities for Slaughter Plants

Handling Facility Design and Production Systems

Link to lots of photos of cattle systems

Designs for Building Cattle Dipping Vats


Ranch and Feedlot

Grandin, T. and Deesing, M. 2008. Humane Livestock Handling. Storey Publishing, North Adams, MA, USA.

Grandin, T.(Editor) 2014 (4th Edition). Livestock Handling and Transport, 3rd Edition. CAB International Wallingford Oxon, United Kingdom.

Grandin, T. (1989, with 2002 updates). Behaviour Principles of Livestock Handling. The Professional Animal Scientist. 5:1-11.

Packing Plant Layout

Grandin, T. (1991). Principles of Abattoir Design To Improve Animal Welfare. In: J.Matthews (Editor) Progress in Agriculture Physics and Engineering. CAB International Wallingford, Oxon, United Kingdom.

Grandin, T. (1990). Design Of Loading Facilities and Loading Pens. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 28:187.

Click here to return to the Homepage for more information on animal behavior, welfare, and care.