A. Neck

B. Withers

C. Crease in back

D. Tail head

E. Ribs

F. Behind the shoulder


The ideal BCS is between 4.5 and 6

1. Poor

Animal is extremely emaciated; spinous processes, ribs, tailhead, tuber coxae, and ischia projecting prominently.  Bone structure of withers, shoulders, neck easily noticeable.  No fatty tissue can be felt.

2. Very Thin

Animal emaciated; slight fat covering over base of spinous processes.  Transverse processes of lumnar vertebrae feel rounded.  Spinous processes, ribs, tailhead, tuber coxae and ischia prominent.  Withers, shoulders, and neck structure faintly discernable.

3. Thin

Fat build up about halfway on spinous processes.  Transverse processes cannot be felt.  Slight fat cover over ribs.  Spinous processes and ribs easily discernable.  Tailhead prominent but individual vertebrae cannot be identified.  Tuber coxae appear rounded but easily discernable.  Withers, shoulders and neck accentuated.

4. Moderately Thin

Slight ridge along back.  Faint outline of ribs discernible.  Tailhead prominence depends on conformation.  Fat can be felt around tail head.  Tuber coxae not discernable.  Withers, shoulders and neck not obviously thin.

5. Moderate

Back is flat (no crease or ridge); ribs not visually distinguishable but easily felt; fat around tailhead beginning to feel spongy; withers appear rounded over spinous processes; shoulders and neck blend smoothly into body.

6. Moderately Fleshy

May have slight crease down back; fat over ribs spongy; fat around tailhead soft; fat beginning to be deposited along the side of withers, behind shoulders, and along sides of neck.

7. Fleshy

May have slight crease down back; individual ribs can be felt, but noticeable filling between ribs with fat; fat around tailhead soft; fat deposited along withers, behind shoulders,and along neck.

8. Fat

Crease down back; difficult to feel ribs, fat around tailhead very soft; fat area along withers filled with fat, area behind shoulder filled with fat, noticeable thickening of neck; fat deposited along inner thighs.

9. Extremely Fat

Obvious crease down back; patchy fat appearing over ribs, bulging fat around tailhead; along withers, behind shoulders and along neck, fat along inner thighs may rub together; flank filled with fat.

*Image and information from www.purinamills.com