While most youth who show are supported by family and community, Cameron Choate from Hubbard, TX is the first to credit that support at the top of reasons for her success. “I’ve been showing since I was 8, so around 10 years. Throughout the process, every year, there was someone helping me. I’m really grateful to everyone that has helped me, even those who just gave me a little tip, or some advice. But most especially my parents and my uncle. It wouldn’t be possible to show at all without that community of support.”
While Cameron’s family has always been involved in the cattle industry, it was her uncle who passed down his passion for showing to his niece. “My uncle was a really big part of helping me get where I am. He taught me everything I know. But I also learned so much from other livestock show people. Over the years I’ve made friends from all over the country and we are always helping each other out. We are like a second family.”
Right at the beginning, Cameron was showing cattle, either steers or heifers. Being so small at the age of 8, she needed a lot of help. “Our process has changed over the years. When I was little, I tried to be as involved as I could, but those steers were big!” She explains “Now that I’m grown, I’m much more aware of the whole process, and involved in all the daily care as far as hair, nutrition and training. At night we take them on a couple of laps around the run and practice setting them up to get into a routine. I enjoy the whole process, but I really like when they are babies, working on getting them broke, working the halter.”
When it comes to nutrition, her family made the switch to Hi-Pro Feeds toward the end of her 8th grade year. “We order by the pallet and were having a lot of trouble with other brands that would have a few dried-out bags in each pallet, like they’d been sitting for a while. Other people we showed with told us Hi-Pro is always fresh, so we made the switch and really don’t have any problems. It is very consistent and fresh every time we get a pallet of it. The steers always eat it.” She continues “That’s important because living in Texas it’s hard to keep their weight up since it’s so hot for so much of the year. Keeping weight on and keeping them fresh can be a challenge.”
Their successful program has led to Cameron travelling all over the country, last year winning Reserve Grand Champion at Battle of the Cattle, as well as best in class, Senior Showmanship, and Reserve Premier Market Beef Exhibitor at the Denver Livestock Show. “These days we do well consistently, but it took us awhile to get there. We experimented with different ways of doing things, but now we’ve got a great exercise, training, and nutrition program.” Says Cameron.
These days Cameron is enjoying a few of her last shows before aging out while starting her studies at Texas Tech University. However, she’s not leaving her show experiences behind her. “I’ve grown up talking about genetics and AI. Right now, I’m an animal science major, but eventually I’d like to be an embryologist.”
Hi-Pro Feeds wants to wish Cameron luck in all her future endeavors. For more information on our show feeds, click here.