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Just wondering if you can feed your calfs to much. My hubbie thinks i am feeding mine to much. They are little butterballs. They were weened at about 10 weeks.
 

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Just wondering if you can feed your calfs to much. My hubbie thinks i am feeding mine to much. They are little butterballs. They were weened at about 10 weeks.
Over feeding calves is likely the number one killer of calves by causing scours. If yours are thriving and not scouring, you must be doing something right. often, people over feed milk and cause scours. By the time they get advice and buy medication, and electrolytes, the calf is critical or dead.
 

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Ok,they aren't on milk. I have two and their three months old. I feed them a bucket of feed a day shared between both and access to hay free will. They look good and have nice round bellies. Their bowls are good. I guess we were used to the look on sale barn calfs. We got these to from the feed lot right at birth. Fed them colostrum First couple of days.
 

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Ok,they aren't on milk. I have two and their three months old. I feed them a bucket of feed a day shared between both and access to hay free will. They look good and have nice round bellies. Their bowls are good. I guess we were used to the look on sale barn calfs. We got these to from the feed lot right at birth. Fed them colostrum First couple of days.
The "fat" look shouldn't fool you nor your hubby as far as the size of their bellies are concerned. A big rumen doesn't equate to level of fatness--level of fatness across the ribs, spine and pelvis is the best indicator to really see if your calves are like butterballs or not. If you can still see/feel the pelvis--the hooks and pins, if you will--but they are not so sharply outlined, then they are in good shape. If you can't see nor feel the pelvis, then they are indeed fat.

What is the nutrient content of their feed anyway? And how much is "a bucket full" of feed?
 

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I've worked at a feed store and I can tell you there are different sizes of feed buckets--8 quart, 10 quart, 12 quart, etc. You've probably been feeding with one of those 8 or 10 quart pails, but I could be wrong, which is why I'm asking.
 

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Ok,they aren't on milk. I have two and their three months old. I feed them a bucket of feed a day shared between both and access to hay free will. They look good and have nice round bellies. Their bowls are good. I guess we were used to the look on sale barn calfs. We got these to from the feed lot right at birth. Fed them colostrum First couple of days.
I try to feed 1% of a calf's body weight per day of 16% protein grain mix for calves that size along with all of the better quality hay they can eat. I want them growing frame and muscle but no need for them to be overly fat.
 

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I think its probably an eight quart. Is that enough
I can't tell you if it's more than enough without seeing them (have any pictures to share?) and knowing what their weight, breed and even sexes are, or even knowing what kind of feed you're feeding them.

That's the curse of the Internet: I can't tell you anything about the amount of feed or quality of feed is sufficient for your calves across cyberspace because I've never seen them before among many other things: A three-month-old calf can be as little as 100 lbs or as much as 300 lbs depending on the breed. The types and nutrient value of a feed for such young animals vary in more ways than you can imagine.

I hope this doesn't make things more frustrating for you or unhelpful in anyway, but trust me, when someone like me knows more about your animals it helps a lot. :)



However, Allen covered it well for me since I didn't have enough time to come back with a reply. At least 16% protein (absolutely no urea!!) and around 65 MCal of energy (as in TDN [total digestible nutrients]) fed at ~0.5 to 1% of their bodyweight per day is what is definitely considered "enough." Note, though, that the amount of grain is needed depends on the type of calves you're feeding: Usually dairy calves need to be fed more grain than beef calves, as much as 0.5 to over 1% more.
 

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Karen, my calfs are santa gertrudis, i have been feeding them 12% to 16% sweet feed. Sometimes i get a bag of. High protein calf feed. Here are pictures of them.the first is bully, the boy. And then rosie the girl.
 

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Well, aren't they a couple of sweethearts! :D

They look like they're in good shape, not too fat and not too thin either. But I wouldn't call them "butterballs" like your hubby has. ;)

I can't tell much of their body condition from the amount of hair they have, but they look about as normal as normal as can get. But I can tell that the bull calf seems to like to hog the feed more than the heifer--just a dominance thing. She needs a little more weight (or fat) on her than with the bully boy.

Are you feeding them so that they're eating together or separately? If you're feeding them together (like one big pile or one long line in the feed trough), try to feed them separately, like one pile for one calf and another pile for the other calf so that Rosie has a better chance at getting her share of the feed as her DB. (You probably don't feed them in piles, just in a feed trough, but if it comes to it, you might have to spread the feeding stations around to make sure she gets her fair share without having to be pushed out by her bigger brother.) We've always done that with our stocker steers because of the competition that goes on when the chop pails come out and the cracked barley is dumped in different piles on the ground for them. It just limits competition and allows for the less-dominant animals to get a chance to have their share without getting pushed out by the more bossy, pushy dominant steers. From the pics, I'm assuming that Rosie is the more submissive one of the two, hence the lower in condition.

Assuming they're around 200 to 250 lbs each (the bull being more of the latter than the former), they should be getting around 2 to 3 lbs of feed each. An 8 qt. pail full of feed between the each of them should be enough, but just make sure to limit the competition between Bully Boy and Rosie.

Otherwise, you're doing really good, Brenda! :)
 

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Thanks Karin, i feed them in a feed trough but i have several small ones so i will definitly separate it. They are sweet hearts. I have put a lot of time and attention into them, i sure dont know if i could ever part with them.
 

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After the first week, I put a little feed out for mine and after they finish their bottle, I will let them suck a little off my hand. In a few days they are nibbling by themselves.

By the time they turn 4-5 weeks old they are eating well and at 8 weeks, the bottle stops and they pick up on eating feed.

I feed a 15% creep that we make at work.
 

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My son in law brought me some creep that was pretty much powdered. I feed them that first and then put them on the small pelleted creep and calf starter. Now they get sweet feed. I noticed they have 12% and 16% what does the percentage mean.
 

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My son in law brought me some creep that was pretty much powdered. I feed them that first and then put them on the small pelleted creep and calf starter. Now they get sweet feed. I noticed they have 12% and 16% what does the percentage mean.
percentage = protein

The creep I feed is a blend of cracked corn, roughage pellets, protein concentrate pellets , cotton seed meal and molasses. They love it.
 

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I keep looking at the pics of these 2 calves. I cannot come to a conclusion as to what bothers me with the appearance. These calves just do not look thrifty to me. I do not like the poultry sharing the pen with the calves. The overly large gut on these animals does not reflect the quality of feed they are getting. I know it is Winter and long hair coats are expected but the hair seems overly coarse. If they were mine I would worm them ASAP just in case they have a parasite load.
 

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I keep looking at the pics of these 2 calves. I cannot come to a conclusion as to what bothers me with the appearance. These calves just do not look thrifty to me. I do not like the poultry sharing the pen with the calves. The overly large gut on these animals does not reflect the quality of feed they are getting. I know it is Winter and long hair coats are expected but the hair seems overly coarse. If they were mine I would worm them ASAP just in case they have a parasite load.
The chickens dont bother me, but they are awfully potbellied and unthrifty in appearence.
 
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