Snow Day On A Dairy Farm

snow cows

While everyone else is rejoicing the snow day that’s happening here, for us it simply means that life will be more difficult. Every day is work on a dairy farm, but when snow arrives with cold temperatures it can make even the easiest chore hard. The local television news crews may remind viewers to care for their dogs and cats, but a few hundred hungry bovines is a different challenge altogether. Continue reading

Bull Calves On Our Dairy

This calf is not the future of our herd.

 I didn’t really want this calf.

I didn’t really want a bull calf.

But that’s where the negativity ends.

All calves, and I do mean all of them, are raised exactly the same on our farm. We don’t do anything differently just because a calf is not a heifer. Now, if I believed everything I read on the internet I would “know” that dairy farmers “always” either kill their bull calves at birth because they’re not heifers or sell them for veal and veal is bad. Actually I never even knew the facts of veal production until I read this insightful post on veal farmers by the Farmer’s Wifee. But neither of these options are what happens on our farm.

Bull calves have value to us. Yes, they do. Have you seen the price of beef lately? Dairy farmers are also beef farmers. We sell our bull calves after we have weaned them from milk to be raised for beef. This provides a great secondary source of income for our farm.

Of course I’d love for every newborn to be a beautiful heifer that would someday enter our herd, but we will gladly care for every calf born on our farm. And that, ahem, is no bull.