what cow to get - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 08:50 AM Thread Starter
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what cow to get

finally im living on enough land to add a cow to my collection of horses and dogs and chickens and what not :) im having trouble deciding though and was hoping there were some cow people here who might be able to help me decide what to get.

i have my little heart set on a friesian (holstein) cow but im worried about the amount of milk they are supposed to produce. i can milk once a day but certainly not twice and then what would i do with all the milk?

we do want fresh milk but not that much. so i was thinking about a bull. but then im worried about having a crazy so and so running around chasing anything that moves. if you cant tell im not overly knowledgable when it comes to cows.

basically im looking for advice on what is the best to get...cow or bull? friesian or jersey or something else??

help!! :)

"I whisper but my horse doesnt listen...So I yell!!...He still doesnt listen"


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post #2 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 08:54 AM
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I always thought cows only produce milk if they have a calf.
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post #3 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 08:58 AM Thread Starter
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hmmm not as far as i know although i could be wrong but ive heard they need to be milked every single day sometimes twice a day whether they have a calf or not *confused now*

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post #4 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 09:05 AM
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I think that Miss Kate is right. That they don't start to lactate until they are pregnant. I love the Scottish Highland cattle - check them out Emily:
Scottish Highland cattle.jpg

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post #5 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 09:06 AM
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LOL a cow is a cow except for when you want milk or meat

a heifer is a bovine that has not had a calf. it takes having a calf
to make a cow. then you take 1/2 the total milk produced.
you have to make sure the cow doesn't end up with mastitis and such

you need to milk morning and evening. Jerseys give nice rich milk
and would not give to much milk a day maybe a couple of gal. where as
a holstein (from experience) would give 6 gal. a day. You will get
alot of hand cramps till you get used to squeezing and pulling tits that
long every day. And if you have good aim, the cats will love you.

you could buy a bull calf and have him cut, (then he is a steer) and
have it butchered for meat each fall. And don't try milking a bull or
a steer unless you like jokes.

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post #6 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 09:06 AM
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It's like a big fuzzy teddy bear with deadly horns! How stinkin' cute! I want one!
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post #7 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 09:06 AM
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WikiAnswers - Do cows produce milk all of the time or only when pregnant like other mammals

I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right.

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post #8 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 09:11 AM
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A cow has to have a calf in order to produce milk. The gestation period is 9 months. Dairy farmers like to aim for having cows calf out every 12 months (give or take) because she will slowly start to produce less milk till a new calf is born. Typically the cow is dried up for 1-2 months prior to calving.

As far as a bull... You can have her bred AI so there is no need to have a bull on your property. Each Dairy breed throws something different on the table when it comes to milk production. The holstein will typically produce the most milk with lower butterfat while the jerseys have higher butterfat count. But there are few different breeds out there that you should do research on to find the best fit. The cow should be milked 2 times a day... 12 hours apart.

If you want to have cattle just for the sense of having cattle you dont have to breed the animal and then you dont have to worry about milk. I personally like either the Jersey breed for Dairy and the Polled Herford for beef breed. We use to raise a few head of polled herfords for my 4-H projects (along with dairy steers) and the herfords dont get overly huge and have a pretty calm attitude. My heifers were always really easy to work with.

Just make sure you do your research online to figure out what you need/want beofore you go out and buy. If you want to milk they cow is going need extra food and supplements versus a heifer or even a steer... but I would avoid getting a bull all together... some are calm and others are just plain dangerous.


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post #9 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 10:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angel_Leaguer View Post
Just make sure you do your research . . . before you go out and buy.
Very well said!
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post #10 of 34 Old 02-27-2009, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RegalCharm View Post
you could buy a bull calf and have him cut, (then he is a steer) and
have it butchered for meat each fall.
Somehow I'm doubting that shes going to butcher the calf after she raised it up. lol
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