How much to feed a Jersey cow?

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by willow_girl, Jan 16, 2004.

  1. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

    Dec 7, 2002
    Dysfunction Junction
    Well, we brought our new cow home tonight. :D Now I'm wondering how much to feed her. She isn't very big!!! She is due to freshen in March. I'm wondering how much hay and grain she should be getting. (She is used to being fed hay; I'm not sure how much grain she was getting. The farm where she came from didn't feed haylage or silage though.)

    I'm thinking 3 flakes of hay per day? How much grain (sweet feed) though? 5 lb? Or more?
    Help me out, folks! :D
  2. shelbynteg

    shelbynteg Well-Known Member

    Jul 31, 2003
    Beasley, Tx
    I brought home a fresh jersey about 2 months ago. The dairy man told me 1-2
    gallons of feed at milking, and 1% of her body weight in hay...for my girl, I'm thinking 75 pounds. Actually, since I'm a very slow milker, I give her as much grain as I need to to keep her busy.

  3. pygmywombat

    pygmywombat Well-Known Member

    Sep 7, 2002
    Northeastern Ohio
    I am assuming she is dry right now or that this is a first calving. Go very easy on the grain in a dry cow. I don't give my cow any until the last three or four weeks before calving and gradually work my way up to about 7 pounds per day. Really it all depends on the cow. Some cows can do fine with a few pounds of grain to maintain milk production and body condition, some cows need 10+ pounds a day.

    As for hay, try feeding her free choice hay. That lets her take as much as she needs. Just refill the manger when she empties it. My Guernsey and her six month old bull calf eat about bale a day, sometimes more when its really cold out. She is about 1100 pounds. Our bales are about 40-50 pounds. A smaller cow like a Jersey would need 30-35 pounds a day, maybe more or less depending on weather, how much she is milking, etc.