the best salts for dairy cow

The Most Important Thing To Look For When Buying A Dairy Cow

When it comes to purchasing a good dairy cow, there’s one key factor you simply can’t overlook.

It’s the most critical element that will determine whether or not your investment pays off in the long run.

The industry has been plagued with fraudulent brokers and farmers who have caused significant losses for novice and experienced farmers alike.

To ensure a successful purchase, there are ten essential things that you should know before buying a dairy cow.

I wish I had known this before buying a dairy cow

Firstly, it’s rare to find a good lactating cow for sale. Farmers who have cows that produce high-quality milk (30 litres per day) typically enjoy high returns and are reluctant to sell unless they face an emergency or receive a high price.

Secondly, the belief that bigger cows produce more milk is false. Smaller cows are often high producers, low feeders, and rarely have heat challenges.

Big-bodied cows can be heavy feeders and may experience delayed heat challenges, which can be problematic for farmers, particularly beginners.

Thirdly, buying cows with big udders may lead to problems on your farm. Although big udders do not necessarily translate to high milk production, cows with big udders are often prone to mastitis, which can lead to a significant decline in milk production.

The best udder size

Fourthly, it is unlikely that a small-scale farmer would serve a cow with a bull in this day and age. Artificial insemination is currently affordable for every farmer, so if a cow is being sold at three months in-calf or below, it may be because the cow cannot conceive when served or has delayed heat.

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Fifthly, always carry out a pregnancy diagnosis before purchasing a cow and request an insemination card if it was served by artificial insemination.

This card and straw provide details about the bull served and the expected calving date. It is essential to verify this information as it’s not uncommon for farmers to lie about the cow’s calving date.

Sixthly, testing for mastitis before purchase is crucial. Some farmers may sell high-yielding cows with chronic mastitis, which is expensive to treat and negatively affects milk production. For farmers to lie about the cow’s calving date.

Seventhly, always insist on milk records for at least a week before purchasing a cow. Some farmers may not milk a cow for a day or two to show you high milk production.

If they do not have records, observe two days of milking, and it will provide insight into the cow’s milk production.

Eighthly, never buy a dairy cow fed on brewer’s waste (machicha). Brewer’s waste is like a drug to cows, and milk production depends on the availability of brewer’s waste.

Removing brewer’s waste from a cow’s diet causes an instant 70% decline in milk production.

Ninthly, always buy a confirmed in-calve heifer. Heifers often have conception problems, so purchasing an already-served and confirmed heifer with fewer complications is easier to manage than lactating cows.

Lastly, note that a cow’s milk production depends on how well it is handled and fed.


Therefore, conducting due diligence and consulting with agricultural consultants on 0736906472 before making a purchase is essential.

Buying a confirmed in-calve heifer with a moderate body figure can help avoid most of the complications associated with purchasing old lactating dairy cows.

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