Do you ever wonder what kinds of cows provide us with milk for our favorite dairy products?
Well, the chances are that the milk you doused your breakfast cereal with, originated from a Holstein cow. Similarly, do you wonder what may be the best types of cattle for meat?
There are many types of cows, each having its own distinct characteristics. Whether you are planning to raise a cow yourself or simply want to know a little more about this amazing animal, start by learning about the different types of cows. Scroll down to read all about them!
Ayrshire is one of the larger breeds. It is a dairy cow that is raised for the large quantity of nutritious milk that they produce. They can weigh anywhere from 900 to over 1,300 pounds! If you plan to raise one, keep in mind that since they are huge, their daily food consumption can easily take a toll on your budget!
Angus cows are Scottish breed of beef cattle and provide some of the best quality meat. Traditionally, they are black in color.
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However, nowadays, red-colored Angus cows are also readily emerging all around. It is important to note that while in the UK, red and black Angus are considered to be the same, in the USA, they are regarded as different breeds!
Jersey cows are ideal for small farms! Unlike Ayrshire, these dairy cows are smaller in size and their maintenance is not heavy on the pocket. A healthy Jersey cow can weigh anywhere between 400 – 800 kg. It is important to note that their milk is famous for its high-fat content. So, if that’s the kind of milk you want, Jersey cows are your best option.
Malvi cows are native to India. While their milk yield is considerably low, these cows are bred as draught breed. Along with Malvi, these grey or white majestic cows are also known as Malavi, Manthani, and Mahadeopuri.
Droughtmaster is beef cattle. This breed has been developed after years of selected breeding. Surely, it does not come as a surprise that Droughtmaster has a number of special qualities. For example, along with providing excellent quality meat, these cows enjoy a high resistance to heat and parasites. Moreover, they are docile and highly adaptable.
When you think about cows, this is the white-and-black cow that comes to mind! Holstein Friesians are famous for their high milk production.
In fact, for the same reason, it is common to spot these cows used in advertisements for dairy products. If you are planning to raise a cow for its milk, to further produce other dairy product such as cheese or butter, consider investing in a Holstein Friesian.
Ankole Watusi cattle are characterized by their colossal horns. It is a domestic American breed of cows. They are hardly ever raised for milk or meat. However, they are still mesmerizing to look at and fairly popular in the world of cattle.
Until very recently, Dexter cows were considered to be very rare. However, in recent years, the breed has recovered and is gradually emerging all around the world. Native to Ireland, these cows are the smallest of all the European breeds and are raised for milk and meat.
With a white belt running along their black coat, Belted Galloway is easy to spot! These distinctive cows are generally raised for their top-quality marbled meat. However, they can also be milked. Owing to their appearance, they are also nicknamed as Oreo or Panda cows.
As the name suggests, this breed originates from Belgium. Highly muscled Belgian Blue is famous beef cattle. Keep in mind that due to the increased muscle yield of this breed, these cows require a high protein diet for staying healthy and happy.
Hailing from the Island of Guernsey, this is a dairy breed of cattle. Their milk has a golden/yellow hue due to high concentrations of B-carotene and is famous for being rich in fat as well as protein. They are usually docile and hardy and are red, fawn, or fawn in color.
It won’t be wrong to say that Brahman is the super breed of cows. These cows have been roaming the Earth for centuries now. Over the years, they have developed resistance to almost all types of cattle diseases and parasites.
Moreover, they can survive in harsh climates on a limited supply of food. Also, the hump on their back keeps them cool, even in the blistering heat. If you intend to breed cows, Brahman should be on the top of your list.
No list of types of cattle is complete without Hereford! Hereford is a popular breed and these cows are raised all around the world under highly varying climatic conditions. This became possible because Hereford cows are highly adaptable.
If you plan to get one, there’s probably no reason to be concerned about the climate – one less thing to worry about! The cherry on top – Herefords provide excellent quality meat.
With their long and slightly horizontal horns, a Texas Longhorn cow is impossible to miss. You may be surprised to find out that the longest recorded length is around 129.5 inch. This mesmerizing breed enjoys a high drought-stress tolerance. Their coats have a wide range of colors. However, black and white Texas Longhorns are most common.
As the name suggests, these cows are raised for their meet. The breed developed as the result of cross-breeding multiple other breeds including Hereford cows, Shorthorn cows, and Brahman bulls. They can be used for a number of purposes. Whether you want milk, looking for good quality meat, or want to breed the best quality animals, Beefmaster cows have got you covered.
Shorthorn cows are multi-purpose. In other words, they are good for both, milking as well as for providing meat. However, at the time of purchasing it is important to be clear about the intent of raising this breed because based on the bloodline, some Shorthorn cows may be better at producing milk while others may be a better option for providing beef. Make sure you buy the right ones!
Simmental is another multipurpose breed of cows. It is interesting to note that these cattle all around the world are raised for milking. However, in the USA, they are mainly bred for beef. Another advantageous trait of Simmental cows is that they grow quickly and can get quite large, hence more meat and milk.
These cows have been around for centuries. In fact, historians have spotted cows in ancient paintings from France and believe them to be Limousin cows. These cows are usually bred for meat. However, it is important to note that they are also great workers that can be used in many ways around a farm or ranch.
Charolais is a French cattle breed. These cows are usually raised for beef and are often crossbred with other beef cattle to provide some of the best quality meat. These cows are also famous for producing good quality hides. Therefore, in case, you are planning to produce leather, Charolais cattle are the best option for you.
If you are looking for a breed that is relatively easy to keep and maintain, try Scottish Highland cows! Over the years, this breed has developed resistance against a number of diseases that are commonly found in cattle.
Moreover, they do well in all sorts of climate. To make things even better, these cows are not really picky when it comes to food. In fact, you can let them roam around a pasture and they’ll take care of their meal.
For further information on farm animals, check out our article “12 Different Types of Chickens”
Whether you are a breeder or want to raise your own cows for meat and milk, when you are out in the market to purchase cattle, make sure that you know all your options! To make the most of your endeavor make sure you buy the right kind of cows, take good care of them, and raise them with love!