Looked at some holsteins today and

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by JeffNY, Dec 20, 2004.

  1. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

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    they were some very nice cows, and calves. What is great about the small family farms is how they treat their animals, atleast some. This family obviously loves their animals, they are all friendly and are very healthy. Very good body mass, ribs are not showing. The calves are friendly along with the heifers. I know show cows that are on Hoards Dairyman's front page are show animals and have some ribs, but these are very healthy. But this is funny and we are the same way, the lady that takes care of these animals is attached. You can tell, she doesn't want to sell more than 1 or 2 :). But her husband comes in and he says to me "oh these are her pets and thats why she doesn't want to part". I think its cool someone takes that much care in these animals, and they do all have names. All of our animals have names, I myself could not part with one of the heifers. She is super friendly, you can hang over her back and she will not move an inch. Actually her mother is the same way. But I do think my mother made a good point to me, perhaps she told me the price because she wanted to scare me. Well it didn't all that much (calves are going for 2300 she said). We were there, and she said "this one is about 2000". Its funny how people get so attached, yet the husband said "how many are you looking for". I said oh 10-12, but thing is im not buying 10-12 of 2000 dollar calves :p. With these id be getting some incredible animals, however 5 is plenty. These cows have won out of 200 cows at the local far, the top "prize". But this is what im looking for, milk production naturally. The natural way to me is, genetics and feed, not BST which is junk. They feed them 60lbs or so a day, they dont use any hormones, they are all natural. They are still milking 13 yr old cows, and that is the way family farms are. The big 1000+ dairy farms don't care, their animals get a number not a name. But the old fashion dairy farms that you see now adays generally have decent animals.

    But those animals on their farm all get 100lbs at their peek gestation period, 1st calf heifers get that as well at their farm. See what we are doing is getting into organic milking, and since these animals are eating similar stuff that they will get here they should do just as good. I am after good animals to start with a good herd, and the fact the calves will also be worth more than calves from a basic ol cow, that has advantages. Our success rate with healthy calves, calves that dont have any problems, is 100%. The calves that had problems, such as one that was a dwarf, and one that almost stopped breathing (he got pnuemonia but we had no idea), they all have been fine. Bought two Jerseys in 03, one heifer and one bull calf. Both did very well, the bull calf did die but it was one of those deals where it was out in the pasture, he got on his back near some ice and that was it. The heifer ALMOST did the same thing, but i caught her in time. Jerseys tend to go down easy from what ive seen.

    What im getting at is, calves, and calves do tend to have problems, but with a small herd you can keep on top of any issues they may have. If they get scours (thats not all that hard to treat) you can keep at it with them. But my entire point to the post is, small farms tend to keep up with animal health, and can manage the animals better. Now not all small farms are like that, but a lot are.


    Jeff
     
  2. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

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    Jeff, thanks for sharing your story. I am always glad to hear about small farms that are doing things the right way and being successful at it.

    The best advertisement is success, no? :)

    You didn't indicate whether you decided to purchase any of the calves, but good luck with your acquisitions. :)
     

  3. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

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    Well its funny, I called up a couple days ago to thank her for the "tour" of sorts and to tell her they are doing a good job. After talking a little more, and without mentioned what id like to get from there, she said "we could get you 4-5. Funny how that is the number I was targeting from them, and I didn't mention it :). The ones she wants to sell me are 8 months old, and the reason why is because she knows I want to start September of 06, and likes the animals to calf at 24-26 months. Not a problem, see ill take into account what people want that sell the animals, it makes them happy and shows respect IMO. Afterall if you impress someone it gives you a good word..


    So yeah ill be getting them, sometime soon I hope.


    Jeff