There are 26 breeds of mini cattle and are all 42″ or less at maturity. They are often used for small-scale milk production, as pets, or for breeding. Miniature cattle breeders are scattered all throughout the United States. Miniature cows cost $1,800 to $3,500 depending on the size, markings, and color.
These tiny fluffy cows are gentle, kind, friendly, and cute much like a dog…just a smidge bigger. Not to mention, they will make for the best cuddle buddy in the winter. That being said, owning miniature cattle is a big commitment and responsibility. They require daily feeding and attention, as well as These animals require daily feeding and attention. They also live as long as 20 years.
Calves are weaned between 4-5 months over a 6 week period. The weaning process begins with the calf spending 10-14 days pasture weaning with their dam wearing a weaning nose ring. This process is low stress for both cow and calf allowing the calf to wean naturally. The calf will than spend 4 weeks being handled, socialized, groomed etc learning to trust people and want to be in their space. My goal is that every calf leaves my ranch gentle and sweet, ready to be loved on in their new home. Halter Breaking is available at an addition charge and can begin at week 7 post weaning over an additional 4 week period.
Why Miniature Cows?
1. Mini cows are exceptional pets that demonstrate a great deal of affection, are very social, and are easy to take care of.
2. Miniature Cows are great tax write-offs for the small acreage farmer.
3. Mini cows will mow your small pastures, produce fertilizer, and are easily contained with a simple hot-wire.
4. Miniature cattle are a great inexpensive way to teach your children responsibility, and some very useful agricultural fundamentals. Their small size makes miniature cattle easy and safe to work with for any enthusiast.
5. Miniature cows do not require expensive handling equipment.
6. Miniature cattle can easily pay for themselves through the sale of calves and potential tax write-offs.
7. Miniature Cows can be a great business opportunity. Demand for good quality miniature cows is very high.
Why Are Miniature Cows Good Pets?
Miniature cows are very affectionate and friendly pets. They only need about a half of an acre each to live comfortably. Not only are they good for the family, but they can produce milk and fertilizer for your family garden and farm. They are such social pets that they are sometimes used as animal therapy pets and in petting zoos. They would do well in a 4-H club as well.
Miniature Cattle Breeds ~ Size Of Miniature Cows
These miniature cows can be classified in categories that depend on their height at the hip.
- Midsize miniature cows measure from 42 to 48 inches at the hip.
- Standard miniature cows range from 36 to 42 inches.
- Micro-miniature cows are all less than 36 inches in height at the hip.
So generally, miniature cattle breeds range anywhere from 1/2 to 1/3 the size of normal cattle.
Are Mini Cows Healthy?
Miniature cows are generally very healthy pets. They live between about 12 to 25 years, so anyone looking to get one as a pet will be making a long-term commitment. The only thing pet owners should keep a look out for is “bulldog syndrome”, also known as lethal chondrodysplasia. It is the abnormal growth of the cartilage and bone. It leads to physical deformity in places such as the limbs, face, and spine. Sadly, it also leads to death.
On the bright side, it’s rare in cows and seen more often in, you guessed it, bulldogs. So as long as you take good care of them, you will have a lifelong pet.
How Much Does A Miniature Cow Cost?
As mentioned briefly before, mini cows can range anywhere from around $1,000 to $7,000. They are more expensive than their full-size companions but need only a half an acre per mini cow. This makes it easier to own more cows per acre of land you own, and they often produce better milk and are much more kind.
Miniature cows make better pets because they are often very docile, easily trainable, and gentle. This makes them the perfect pet for any family with small children or the elderly. Some breeds may be less practical because of their horns and the accidents that may ensue because of them. Luckily there are 10 breeds mentioned here that you can choose from.
Do Miniature Cows Stay Small?
Miniature cows are about one-half to a third the size of a normal cow. Not measuring over 48 inches full-grown, these cows will stand about waist height next to an average height person. They can range anywhere between 500 to 1,000 pounds, but they stay pretty short. It is always a good idea to seek out a reputable mini cow breeder just to be sure you are actually buying a miniature cow.
Advantages Of A Mini Cow
What is so different about having a mini cow as a pet, is that you can benefit in so many more ways than just having an adorable and loving companion. Miniature cows produce enough milk to feed a family and oftentimes much more. You could get between half a gallon to a gallon of milk per pump, and some cows can pump up to 4 times a day.
Not only do they give you milk, but they don’t need as much room to roam as a full-size cow does. They only require half an acre of land, minimum for each animal. That’s about the size of most yards nowadays.
Can Miniature Cows Be Mated To A Standard-Size Bull? If Not, How What’s The Best Option Other Than Buying A Miniature Bull?
No. It is not advisable to breed a miniature cow to a standard-size bull, even if he is a smaller than most of his breed. A mismatch in size could cause a large calf, and the cow might need a cesarean to deliver the calf successfully.
A better option is to breed your cow using artificial insemination (AI). Semen is available from some nice miniature bulls, if you take the time to do some research. It’s important to carefully check the source when purchasing semen. Some people claim to have bulls that are a certain height, but may not provide accurate measurements.
Do You Raise Other Breeds Or Plan To Miniaturize Other Breeds?
In addition to the miniature Jersey, we currently raise Dexters, Irish Jerseys, Scottish Highlanders, Belted Galloways, Herefords and White Park. We are working on miniaturizing the Holstein breed and are currently at the midsize miniature stage. We hope to work on one or two other milking breeds in the future, possibly the Brown Swiss and the Guernsey.