10 Tips for Raising Cattle

tips for raising cattle 10 Tips for Raising Cattle

Each one of us has our own preferred lifestyle. Some rely heavily on their sources of income like 9-to-5 jobs or their own businesses. And then there are those who prefer homesteading.

There’s a certain appeal to being self-reliant even if it has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Homesteaders can live off the grid, secure in the thought that their health is not in jeopardy, because they eat food that they have grown and raised themselves.

We can also live that kind of life. It’s a fact that farming is laborious, but it is rewarding and anyone can do it. There is no need to wonder how the food on your plate was made.

Cows provide milk and meat, making them ideal livestock even for those who are new to farming. Raising cattle can become more than a source of clean, healthy food; it can also be a good source of income. All you need is hard work, proper management and planning. Plus you will have a source of food in emergencies, natural disasters or when SHTF.

Here are a few tips we have gathered for those who are new to cattle raising:

1. Choose Calves Carefully

choosing calves

The first thing you should know in learning how to raise cattle is where to find a good supplier of quality animals. The most advisable to purchase are older feeders or several calves that are already weaned. A good place to start looking for advertisements is on the local newspaper. You can even advertise yourself as an interested buyer. Visiting farms and local feed mills provides opportunities to be led to farmers who currently have some animals for sale. You can try auction houses, but always be wary of animals bought from auction houses as some of them might already be sick. If you plan to purchase from an auction house, make sure to have someone with you who can pick out healthy animals from those that are not. Via raising-cattle.com

2. Provide Adequate Shelter

shelter for cattle

An important consideration when providing shelter for cattle is to make it draft free, but not tight. Cattle give off a great amount of moisture in respiration and voiding of wastes. Structures that do not allow that moisture to escape can cause all sorts of health problems in the cattle. A good three-sided shed, with its back into the wind will provide plenty of shelter during the worst of weather. Via www.backwoodshome.com

3. Land Must be Suitable for Grazing

grazing cattle

Determine the carrying capacity of your land, and only keep as many cattle that your pasture can adequately support. Split your pasture into at least two camps, so that you can rotate your herd, allowing one camp to rest while the cattle graze on the other. Alternatively, you can use a portable electric fence for cattle to contain your herd while allowing them to strip graze smaller sections at a time, moving them around more frequently as necessary. Via stuff4petz.com

4. Deworm

vet with cow

Deworming is a common task for any cattle herd, and few medical treatments yield as much payback, experts say. But, there are a lot of questions around what products to use, when to treat and how to make it work best. Via agriculture.com

5. Feeding Options

feeding cows

You will then have to buy feed for your cows. Your cattle have to get a lot of nutrients in order to produce quality milk and meat. You can feed your cows fresh grass which is recommended or cattle feed that can be bought from your local livestock store. Via raisingcattleforbeginners

6. Grass is Good

grass fed cows

There are many different ways to feed your livestock. You can choose from grain, hay, silage, minerals, supplements, and virtually endless combinations of them. Commercial dairies actually use specially designed computer programs and automated equipment to feed each cow a specific ration based on the amount of milk they produce. It can all be extremely high tech – but is that the best scenario for your homestead? Probably not. Via pioneersettler.com

7. Breeding Hack

black bull

When breeding cattle, always keep your cattle in a healthy environment and in good condition. Many mistakes done before breeding can cause significant problems to the entire process. For example, if you overfeed or underfeed your cows, it not only lessens their chances of conceiving but increases the calf’s health risks at birth. Via ezinearticles.com

8. Consider the Climate

cows near creek

You also have to consider the climate in your area. Do you get enough rainfall? If you don’t, there could be a problem in your water supply in the future. Is there a creek nearby? Where can you install a watering hole? These are just some questions that you need to get answers for. Via howtoraisecattle.net

9. Fertile Land

fertile pasture

Don’t try to produce pastures on poor land without fertilizer (limestone, nitrogen, phosphate and potash). It won’t pay off. Via countrysidenetwork.com

10. Give ‘Em Water

cow drinking water

Finally, make sure you have a good supply of water. Just to give you an idea, cows, on average, drink about 12 gallons of water per day. This average is a good rule of thumb to remember when setting up troughs or tubs as a water source. For the winter time, tank heaters are a great way to save your back from doing too much ice chopping as the weather drops. Via ketchummfg.com

What are your tips for raising cattle? Share them in the comments!

If you liked this article, check out our previous article on raising pigs.

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