Best Calf Puller (Reviews) 2019

Best Calf Puller

When you decide to keep cattle, you should be adequately prepared. This includes having the proper equipment to safely keep and breed your cattle should you choose to do so. But, calves are not always born into the world easily, and some heifers may require assistance giving birth. That’s where a high-quality and reliable calf puller comes in.

But when dealing with the well-being and safety of your animals, you want to have and use the best calf puller you can find.

That’s why we’ve come up with a list containing the five best calf pullers available on the market. We’ve also included reviews of these products and some tips for using and choosing a calf puller. 

Top 5 Rated Comparison Table

​Reviews of the Best Calf Pullers

Ideal Instruments 3020 Ratchet-Style Calf Puller

The 3020 ratchet-style calf puller by Ideal Instruments is one of the best calf pullers you can find on the market. This ratchet puller will allow you to also use it as a single-pull operation or with a zig-zag pull depending on your calving needs at the time.  

It has an extendable length attachment to give it an increased total length of 78 inches. This high-quality puller is made of durable, rust-proof steel that operates quietly and is easy to assemble and clean.


Pros

  • ​This is a ratchet-style puller that offers a zig-zag pull and single-pull option as well
  • Comes with a standard or starting rod length of 66 inches, but has an extension attachment to give it a length of 78 inches
  • Made of high-quality steel​
  • Has smooth, clean grooves for quieter operation
  • Easy to assemble, disassemble, and clean

Cons

  • ​​Expensive



AAPROTOOLS Premium Grade Double Ratchet Calf Puller

This calf puller is a premium-grade, high-quality piece of equipment that’s made from the best stainless steel. It’s easy to assemble and disassemble and is also reportedly easy to clean and use.

This is a veterinary-quality piece of equipment that will help you to deliver your calves using its double ratchet lever-pull design. The manufacturer guarantees that you’ll be satisfied with this product.


Pros

  • ​Constructed of a high-quality stainless steel
  • Uses a premium-grade, double ratchet lever-pull
  • Veterinary-quality tool for your peace of mind
  • Easy to assemble and disassemble
  • Easy to clean and use

Cons

  • ​​​A few issues with quality control here and there



G.S. Heavy-Duty Calf Extractor

The G.S. Heavy-Duty Calf Extractor is a calf puller that was designed and made for particularly difficult calf deliveries. It’s made of high-quality, heavy-duty steel for durability and stability while you help your heifer give birth.

With its strong construction, there’s little to no chance of this pull breaking while you’re using it. Additionally, it helped to provide an even amount of tension at the proper angles to better perform the birthing process.

There are videos available online that help to demonstrate not only how this product is used, but how adept it is for assisted birthing.


​Pros

  • ​Made to handle particularly difficult calving
  • Has a 65-inch handle
  • Made of high-quality, heavy-duty stainless steel
  • Strong construction offers stability and little to no chance of breakage
  • Weighs a little over 20 pounds

Cons

  • ​Not as sturdy as it could be



Zikimed Ratchet-Style

This ratchet-style calf puller from Zikimed is incredibly easy to assemble and is made to last through many calvings. It’s a single-action calf puller that’s designed to be usable by one person, though you should always have others present while working with cattle as a safety precaution.

It features deep-cut threads that help to prevent the ratchet from slipping during operation, increasing the safety of the process. The jack is durable and has a large handle for simple operation, and it also helps to minimize the likelihood of pinching or breaking fingers.

The manufacturer offers a money-back guarantee if you’re not happy with this product.


​Pros

  • ​​​This calf puller is made of the finest quality steel
  • Features a 36-inch steel-chrome OB chain, a total rod length of 67 inches, and 25-inch breech
  • This is a single-action calf puller designed for use by one person
  • Easily disassembles for cleaning and storage
  • The threads are deep-cut to prevent ratchet slipping

Cons

  • ​Can be a little tricky to setup



Challenger Grooming Veterinary Dual Ratchet

This is the only aluminum calf puller that we’ll be reviewing here. The aluminum is lightweight but incredibly durable. Even so, if you’re more accustomed to the steel equipment, this tool may feel flimsy in comparison, though it’s also easier to handle.

This calf puller pulls on one of the calf’s legs at a time to gently walk them out of the birth canal, minimizing damage to your heifer and your new calf. It features a dual-hook ratchet with two-section shaft measuring.


​Pros

  • ​The roads of this puller are 32 inches each with a 25-inch breech
  • Comes in an attractive silver and blue palette
  • Made of lightweight but durable aluminum
  • Dual-hook ratchet type with the two-section shaft measuring
  • Pulls one leg at a time to help birth the calf

Cons

  • ​​While the aluminum makes this tool easier to use with its lighter weight, it may not feel as sturdy or durable as steel alternatives


​A Puller for Calves Buying Considerations

So you’ve got your cattle, now you have to prepare for any potential problems with delivering calves. Some ranchers get a calf puller and never have to use it, while others have to use it infrequently for one or two heifers that have trouble. Either way, you don’t want to be caught unprepared.

Make Sure That the Calf Can be Pulled

Not all calves need to be pulled, and not all calves even can be pulled. Just because a cow is taking its time birthing a calf does not necessarily mean that she needs assistance for delivery.

But if your heifer is having a bit of trouble, either she’s not able to push hard enough or the calf simply won’t come out, you can assist with a calf puller or calf jack. Make sure that the calf is positioned properly, that the chain is placed correctly to avoid additional injury, and that you only pull or try to jack the calf when the heifer strains to push.

Taking these precautions can save not only your heifer but her calf as well. Improper use of the calf puller or calf jack can cause severe injury or death because the jack is capable of up to a couple of thousand pounds of pull.

Additionally, some calves will need to be removed from the cow via a C-section rather than being pulled. This is usually a result of the calf being particularly large and unable to be safely passed through the pelvic region and birthing canal of the mother.

Calves that need to be removed via C-section should only be removed with the help of an experienced and qualified veterinary professional to avoid further complications, undue injuries, and possible death.

What Pull Type the Calf ​Tool Utilizes

Primarily, two pull types will be highlighted in your search for an effective and safe calf puller. These are the zig-zag and the ratchet-style pulls.

Zig-Zag Pull

Calf pullers that allow you to use a zig-zag pull method are preferably for when the stuck calf is a bit larger or wider than anticipated and is stuck by its shoulders within your heifer’s birth canal.

A zig-zag pull will help to avoid locking up the large calf’s shoulders in the heifer’s pelvic opening. It will also help to minimize or prevent injuries to the calf’s joints and bones during the assisted birthing process.

Ratchet-Style Pull

Most of the calf pullers you’ll see are ratchet-style pullers. Many of these also allow for single-pull options or zig-zag pulling, so if you want one with the additional options you should look for those multipurpose pullers specifically to be sure that they’re intended for those processes.

Ratchet-style pullers usually have a jack operation and feature smooth, clean grooves. This helps to lessen the amount of wear on the equipment during operation and keeps the puller operating more quietly. The less noise generated by your puller, the easier it will be to use on a straining heifer.

The most important thing to do is to mimic the nature of the birthing process. No matter what pull technique or tool you use, you need to pull the calf out in a natural way and only pull when the heifer strains.

Materials and Sanitation

For the sake of both stability and sanitation, most, if not all, calf pullers and calf jacks are some kind of metal. For the most part, they will be made of stainless steel or aluminum. They will likely be treated to resist rusting and corrosion.

Make sure that you use special calving lubricant while using your calf puller, and use plenty of it to fully lubricate the birth canal and as much of the calf as you can safely reach, excluding its legs where you intend to attach the puller.

You should clean your calf puller before and after each use with a mild disinfectant and make sure that it dries properly between uses. 

The Final Word

Nobody really looks forward to having to pull a calf, but sometimes it is necessary to do so for both the safety of your cow and the safety of the calf itself. By having the best calf puller available ready and on-hand, you’ll at least be prepared should pulling the calf become something that you have to do.

The above calf pullers are the best ones you’ll find on the market and are sure to help you safely deliver a happy, healthy calf. We hope that you found our reviews and tips helpful.