The tattoo letter for 2017 is “E”. The Table below gives each year and its associated tattoo letter. Most breeders use the following sequence for tattooing: First, the letter initial of their Herd Prefix, followed by the number of the calf for the year, and then the associated tattoo letter for the year.
EXAMPLE: If your farm name is "Smythville" Farm - SVF, and you are tattooing the 5th calf that is born in Year 2010, then the tattoo for this calf will be: SVF5E (Where "SVF" stands for the farm initial; "5" identifies it as the fifth calf born this year; and "E" stands for the tattoo letter associated with Year 2017.)
Tattoo Letters for year:
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- Halter or muzzle the animal, if necessary.
- Cleanse the area to be tattooed using a cloth dampened with a cleansing fluid, such as alcohol, to remove dirt, grease, and wax.
- Insert the correct symbols into the pliers and press down firmly over the needles with a thin rubber sponge pad. This pad helps to release the needles from the skin.
- Check the correctness of the symbols by making a mark on a piece of paper.
- Smear ink on the needles and on the skin, choosing an area free from freckles and warts, if possible. Place the symbols parallel to and between the veins or cartilaginous ridges of the ear. The accidental piercing of a vein may spoil the tattoo.
- Make the imprints with a quick firm movement and immediately apply a further amount of ink from the container onto the ear and rub vigorously and continuously for at least fifteen seconds to ensure penetration. This is very important. The most effective method is to rub thumb and forefinger, though a brush may be used.
- Remove the rubber pad and rinse it and the needles in water, then dry. The sponge rubber pad should be discarded when it begins to lose its elasticity. The brush, if one is used, should also be rinsed.
- Do not disturb the area until the healing process is complete, which may be from 5 days to 21 days, depending on the age of the animal.
- Keep a list of tattoo numbers with names of animals and enter same in your private breeding records.