heifers in the field

Many Details but Only Two Main Points on Heifer Raising

There is no one way to raise a dairy replacement. Increasingly I see a wide range of methods used successfully to raise replacements. Goals should be to raise sound animals that will be useful for your herd and to do so economically. Calves can be housed in hutches, individual pen barns, or group fed. Older […]

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picture of Holstein heifers in the field

Dairy Heifer Feed Cost Budget

Today’s successful dairy operators recognize that heifers are an important investment in the future of the dairy business .The cost of raising dairy calves and replacement heifers is very significant on Wisconsin dairy farms, representing 15 to 20 percent of the total cost of milk production. Feed costs as the largest expense in raising dairy […]

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image of a calf

Take Away the Pain

Dehorning has captured more attention recently, both on-farm and in the media. The average American is three generations removed from the farm, and as a result, these consumers sometimes do not understand the reasoning behind practices such as dehorning or disbudding. While this disconnect can be frustrating at times, consumer concerns motivate us to rethink certain […]

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image of a calf

Calf Diseases & Prevention

Among all animals present on a dairy farm, the highest mortality rates generally occur in baby calves prior to weaning. This is a statistic worth paying attention to when thinking in terms of total herd profitability. Chances are high mortality of replacement animals, impaired growth of calves, decreased milk production of chronically afflicted calves, increased […]

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image of a calf

Dairy Cattle Dehorning Practices

Removing horns from dairy cattle is an important farm safety practice because it prevents injuries to people and cattle. Removal of the horn or horn bud is a painful procedure and can be minimized by disbudding/dehorning cattle at a young age with proper pain management. Ideally, disbudding/dehorning should occur prior to six weeks of age. […]

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