There was a time when people used to light lamps in their homes after sunset. We have come a long way since. We now use a number of user friendly electrical gadgets, including ceiling fan lights, which combine the utility of a fan and a light. But the use of electricity also manifests itself in a number of tools and implements which are used by farmhands and agriculturists. Let us look at a few implements that are used for monitoring and controlling cattle.
A pig prod is a handheld stick-like device used by farmers. They use it to get the pigs to move in a certain direction. This device usually gives the pig a high voltage shock. The current flow is kept to a minimum so as to not injure the pig. Although the electrical variant is mostly in use today, but originally a simple stick was used for this purpose to control the pigs.
The main characteristic of cattle’s skin and flesh that allows an electric prod to be successfully used is that the skin is a conductor of electricity. When these prods are pressed against the skin of the cattle, they get a short but very painful electric shock which makes the cattle to move swiftly in the opposite direction. So the farmer has to touch the cattle shocker to the left hind of the cattle if he or she needs them to move to the right.
The shape and design of a typical prod usually follows the guidelines of that particular country. The electric current in an electric cattle shocker is generated by a 9 volt battery or a combination of different battery cells, depending on the kind of current that is to be generated. It is usually never large enough to kill any animal, but it is enough to stun the animal for a second and get it to move swiftly as a reflex to the pain administered.
As a simple yet effective device for effective control of cattle, the cattle prod for dogs and other animals is a very useful and efficient device. The problem occurs when humans misuse these devices for other purposes. There have been instances when certain anti-social elements or gangsters have used these devices on their human foes to get them to agree to something. It has also been reported, though never confirmed, that even police have used such prods to extract confessions under duress.