holestein bulls

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Dixieangus

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I have many questions why are they so huge???Why are they mean???I read on here someone had a 3200 lbs bull would someone post a pic of a big mature hoelstein bull i have never seen a mature one..p.s. the cow are huge :shock: :shock: when i see them go through the sale barn
 

bigbull338

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holsteins are bred to be big an produce mass amounts of milk.we had a holstem cow when we sold out that weighed 1730lbs.an a hol bull that weighed 3000lbs back in the 70s.i wish i had pics of them but i dont.that hol bull was meaner than heck.you didnt get to far from the back of the barn or he would get you.he hated cattle trailers.an he would run 40mph butting it as you tryed to get out of the pasture.you had to get out of the pasture an shut the gate fast or he would tear you up.
 

novaman

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My bulls aren't that big. Heck I can fit them in a small tank in the corner of the barn. Keep some nitrogen in it to cool off those attitudes.
 

djinwa

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As to why they're mean, many attribute it to bottle feeding which causes them to lose respect for humans (makes you one of the herd). Don't know if that explanation satisfies me, however. If that were the only problem, seems that if you bottle fed a Hereford bull calf, he would also become a man hunter and killer. Anyone ever bottle fed beef breed calves?

Or you could raise a Holstein bull on a nurse cow - would he then be less mean?

If one were concerned about loss of respect from bottle feeding, all you'd need to do with a future herd sire is stay out of sight when feeding, or whack him good occasionally so he doesn't get attached.

Then, there is obviously some serious selection for docility for dairy cows. Seems the bulls would also be more gentle, but maybe some combination of testosterone and other genetics that are sex-related going on.
 

backhoeboogie

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djinwa":2bg4zccj said:
As to why they're mean, many attribute it to bottle feeding which causes them to lose respect for humans (makes you one of the herd). Don't know if that explanation satisfies me, however.

The same thing happens with white tail bucks. If you find someone raising one on a bottle, turn them in to your local parks and wildlife department. That will save the life for some kid or little old lady. The bucks only go nuts during the rut and they have no fear of humans.


djinwa":2bg4zccj said:
If that were the only problem, seems that if you bottle fed a Hereford bull calf, he would also become a man hunter and killer. Anyone ever bottle fed beef breed calves?

I buy beef splits and etiher graft them to a nurse cow or raise them on a bottle. There's six in the herd now raised on a bottle with no issues.

No bulls tho. Most bottle feds in the beef world are steers or become a steer.
 

ANAZAZI

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I will try to explain, or mess things up.
Basically, you get what you breed for. If AI breeders favours really big cows, than big cows will develop. Even if a more moderate size could be better at herd level, a big cow is more likely to produce more as an individual and that is were milk numbers come from.

As to mean bulls: if lots of bulls are kept around (for breeding and meat production); there is a tendecy to cull the mean bulls and use the nice ones for breeding. But if the breed is a strictly dairy breed (holstein or jersey) that is mostly AIed and most bulls are either castrated or killed as young. Because of the long breeding for dairy type (against muscle) there is no loss to castrate them either. No culling takes place for disposition traits in bulls.
If on the other hand bulls are most useful as beef producers like in swedish reds, normande or brown swiss, the bulls are kept around to full size and most are kept intact. even if fathers were AI sires they will be culled if they breed mean sons.
And beef breeds culling takes place in the same manner; and even if you americans castrate many, there are herd sires and prospects around and these are culled for disposition.
 

aussie_cowgirl

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My poddy steer was pretty disrespectful and I had him until he was 18mths. He was quite obedient though. Our poddy bull allegedly charged someone but I'm sceptical as he used to run at anyone with a bucket, before that we never had any issues and he grew to 18mths too.
 

snickers

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I know a lady who raised a charX steer calf and she wouldn't let her husband sell him because her father sold her calf when she was younger and she never got over that so she told her husband this calf was staying and she keep him for 8 yrs and he then turned mean on her and they had to put him down and no I don't think they ate him. he was a big pet up to then.
 

hillsdown

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Like what was said you get what you breed for. In the 70's there was a change in breeding and North America decided that bigger was better so that is what they bred for. Our Holsteins are much larger than the original dutch Holsteins. However with more milking parlors and less stanchion barns the trend is moving toward more moderate framed cows rather than frame 9's..

As for bulls I doubt bottle feeding has anything to do with it. It is the breeding of docility towards humans over the last 75 years or so that is more likely the cause.

All of our calves were bottle fed and that included bulls that were sold to other dairies for clean ups. We never had one charge or kill anyone .. The main thing is that herd bulls are held onto for to long .. 2 years is long enough for Holstein clean up bull after that they seem to lose all respect for everyone and become mean. The one that tried to kill me was 4 years old and I had complained about him often unheard until that dreadful day. He weighed 2700 lbs and it took 6 of us to load him 5 men and myself. He kicked the crap out of the stock trailer and caused a few thousand dollars in repairs to it. He was kept wayyyyy to long. He should have been taken care of with bullet instead of been hauled away for 73 cents a pound. We didn't raise this guy but bought him from a Master Breeder herd .
 

alacattleman

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snickers":gbh49u20 said:
I know a lady who raised a charX steer calf and she wouldn't let her husband sell him because her father sold her calf when she was younger and she never got over that so she told her husband this calf was staying and she keep him for 8 yrs and he then turned mean on her and they had to put him down and no I don't think they ate him. he was a big pet up to then.
i had a pet chicken one time named charlie,,, my neighbor kilt it and eat it,
 

Lucky_P

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No doubt in my mind that hand-rearing is the major contributor - these bulls are removed from the dam from birth and reared on bottle/bucket by humans - they lack the typical 'fear/respect' that calf raised on his dam has for humans - and once they reach sexual maturity, they don't hesitate to challenge that measly little human for dominant status - and even a burly 250 lb man is no match for an 1800-2400 lb testosterone-driven mass of muscle and bone.
We see a similar syndrome in hand-reared male llamas - the llama folks call it 'Berserk Male Syndrome' - for good reason. Similar deal for hand-raised stallions; they're a danger.

Lack of culling for disposition probably also plays a role, but it takes second place to the lack of fear/respect those hand-reared bulls have for humans.
 

S&WSigma40VEShooter

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alacattleman":2jabwfaf said:
snickers":2jabwfaf said:
I know a lady who raised a charX steer calf and she wouldn't let her husband sell him because her father sold her calf when she was younger and she never got over that so she told her husband this calf was staying and she keep him for 8 yrs and he then turned mean on her and they had to put him down and no I don't think they ate him. he was a big pet up to then.
i had a pet chicken one time named charlie,,, my neighbor kilt it and eat it,


Killin another mans chicken is just plain wrong. Then to eat well thats just plain ole mean.
 

hillsdown

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Here is a pic of a bull that all of you Holstein folks should recognize. At At least all of you that AI'd.

thelegendarycomestarlee.jpg


Comestar Lee
 

alexfarms

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djinwa":2kqkrcd5 said:
As to why they're mean, many attribute it to bottle feeding which causes them to lose respect for humans (makes you one of the herd). Don't know if that explanation satisfies me, however. If that were the only problem, seems that if you bottle fed a Hereford bull calf, he would also become a man hunter and killer. Anyone ever bottle fed beef breed calves?

Or you could raise a Holstein bull on a nurse cow - would he then be less mean?

If one were concerned about loss of respect from bottle feeding, all you'd need to do with a future herd sire is stay out of sight when feeding, or whack him good occasionally so he doesn't get attached.

Then, there is obviously some serious selection for docility for dairy cows. Seems the bulls would also be more gentle, but maybe some combination of testosterone and other genetics that are sex-related going on.

We had one hereford steer calf that had been bottle fed that went crazy. That was probably the craziest Hereford we ever had, he would put his head up and run right through barbed wire fences...scratching up his chest. That is one out of a lifetime, so I don't know if that really proves anything.
 

randiliana

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djinwa":20iz4zgd said:
As to why they're mean, many attribute it to bottle feeding which causes them to lose respect for humans (makes you one of the herd). Don't know if that explanation satisfies me, however. If that were the only problem, seems that if you bottle fed a Hereford bull calf, he would also become a man hunter and killer. Anyone ever bottle fed beef breed calves?
Or you could raise a Holstein bull on a nurse cow - would he then be less mean?

If one were concerned about loss of respect from bottle feeding, all you'd need to do with a future herd sire is stay out of sight when feeding, or whack him good occasionally so he doesn't get attached.

Then, there is obviously some serious selection for docility for dairy cows. Seems the bulls would also be more gentle, but maybe some combination of testosterone and other genetics that are sex-related going on.

Here is a very interesting article for all of you that raise or may raise bottle babies....

Beware of the bottle raised male orphan!
By
Joseph M. Stookey
Professor of Animal Behaviour
Western College of Veterinary Medicine
Most people have an appreciation and understanding that mature male animals (bulls,
rams, stags, etc.) are potentially dangerous, but most people fail to appreciate that the
most dangerous males are those that have been bottle raised. Such males become
dangerous because of the fact that they have imprinted onto people; it has neither to do
with how they were treated nor is it due to their genetics. Bottle raised males are simply
“programmed” due to their hand rearing to one day threaten their human rivals.
How is it possible for a tame pet to turn on its caretaker or other humans? First off, all
avian and mammalian neonates are born with a preprogrammed drive to imprint onto
their mother. Imprinting refers to a critical period of time early in the animal’s life when
it forms attachments and develops a concept of its own species’ identity. Imprinting
provides animals with information about who they are and for males it determines
specifically who they will find attractive when they reach sexual maturity. Only a few
species like cow birds and cuckoos, that are essentially parasites in another bird’s nest,
can be reared by surrogate parents and get things “right” when they reach sexual
maturity. The famous German ethologist, Konrad Lorenz demonstrated the imprinting
process in goslings and ducklings and showed that in the absence of their real mothers
these precocial birds would imprint onto their human care taker.
Imprinting has long lasting and important biological and psychological effects on adult
sexual behaviour, which is often irreversible. Males that have been imprinted onto
another species tend to court the surrogate species that raised them. For example, ram
lambs that are raised on nanny goats will court and try to breed female goats when they
reach sexual maturity and they show very little interest in ewes. The same pattern
unfolds in birds. Some farm families have the embarrassing pet tom turkey who spends
his entire life courting and pestering the family members that raised him. That is why in
captive breeding programs for endangered species like the whooping crane or the
California condor the hatchlings are raised and fed by bird puppets. The human
caretakers must stay hidden from the young birds in order to ensure they are properly
imprinted onto the correct species and not imprinted onto humans. Fortunately young
females that imprint onto the wrong species are usually not affected and will remain
attracted to the courtship displays from males of their own species. That is why ewe
lambs that are raised on nanny goats will breed to rams even though their surrogate
mother was a goat.
The point to remember is that orphan males of most species will imprint onto their
surrogate mothers and then later in life will direct their sexual behaviour towards the
surrogate species. If humans become the surrogate species it creates a potentially
dangerous situation. When the male reaches sexual maturity, in addition to his
misdirected attraction, he will have bouts of male aggression that he will direct against
his human “competition”. Male aggression is a normal part of sexual behaviour. In
nearly all our livestock and wild species (horses, dogs and cats may be the exception)
bottle raised intact males will show aggression towards humans when they reach sexual
maturity.
Most people mistakenly believe that dairy bulls are dangerous because of their genetics.
It is true that most dairy bulls are dangerous, but it has more to do with their rearing
conditions then their genetics. Most dairy bulls are hand reared in isolation which
contributes to their behaviour towards humans when they become adults. Dr. Ed Price, a
behaviour researcher from the University of California at Davis, has shown that Hereford
bull calves raised in isolation and hand fed by humans became dangerous to people when
they reached adulthood, whereas their group raised counterparts where not mean towards
people.
There are numerous examples of intact male animals that were wonderful pets as young
animals, but grew up to become killers or potential killers of their human caretakers.
When I was a child one of my neighbors was forced to shoot and kill their pet whitetail
buck they had bottle raised, after it had attacked them during rut. This story is not
uncommon. There were 15 deer related human fatalities over a 5 year period in the
United States (Langley and Hunter, 2001); many of these were likely the result of bottle
raised males. During the same time period another 142 humans were killed by cattle.
Though the statistics did not state the exact circumstances, some of these fatalities were
certain to have been caused by hand reared bulls. The “berserk male syndrome”, talked
about in llama circles, whereby a male llama suddenly becomes aggressive towards
people is not a syndrome per se, but the result of bottle raising the male llama. Even
bottle raised ram lambs that seem so friendly and docile while growing up have been
known to inflict severe injury onto their caretakers or an unsuspecting visitor (who turns
their back towards them) when the ram becomes mature.
What should you do with orphan newborns? The best option is to look for other lactating
females in the herd or flock who may have lost their own offspring or who have
additional milk. Such females can be excellent candidates provided that they can be
tricked into accepting the orphan as their own. How to get a surrogate mother to accept
the newborn as her own is a story in itself. However, assuming the adoption or cross
fostering is successful, this offers the best possible method for rearing the orphan since a
surrogate mother will likely have the right milk composition, plus she is willing to remain
“on call” for 24 hours a day.
The take home message is that newborn male orphans of deer, elk, bison, cattle, sheep,
goats and llamas should never be bottle raised or at the very least should be castrated
before reaching sexual maturity in order to avoid a dangerous and potentially lethal future
situation. Please spread the word.
References,
Langley, R. L. and J. L. Hunter. 2001. Occupational fatalities due to animal-related events. Wilderness
and Environ. Med. 12:168-174.
Price, E.O. and S. J. R. Wallach. 1990. Physical isolation of hand-reared Hereford bulls increases their
aggressiveness toward humans. Appl-Anim-Behav-Sci. 27:263-267.
 

djinwa

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Thank you Randiliana, that's a great article. I was just about to do some research, but you did it for me. I haven't read anything this in-depth. This part answers my question:

Dr. Ed Price, a behaviour researcher from the University of California at Davis, has shown that Hereford
bull calves raised in isolation and hand fed by humans became dangerous to people when
they reached adulthood, whereas their group raised counterparts where not mean towards
people.

So, I am now convince that bottle feeding does it. Though it'd be interesting to compare 100 bottle fed Holstein calves with 100 bottle fed Hereford calves to see which group is more deadly.

The aggression related to sexual behavior explains what happened a few years ago. I bought a 6 month old very gentle Jersey calf from a small dairy. I raised him to a year old to breed a cow, then sold him to a guy who just wanted to breed a couple cows. I told him to use him quick and eat him before he got mean. Of course, he kept him for another 6 months, until he almost killed his dad. Grandpa was in a pen fooling with "Freddie" and got between him and some cows, and apparently Freddie decided Grandpa was competing for his girls. A neighbor saved him from death - as it was he spent a week in the hospital.
 

hillsdown

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Go visit a good dairy and see how the animals are housed. They are not on loose pasture but are in housing barns. Thus you would interact on a daily basis with the dairy bulls more so than the beef bulls..right.....therefore your chance of a dangerous encounter is increased..

This is like comparing apples to dogs.. Doesn't work.

So if you take all info into account it seems to me that beef bulls are more deadly than dairy bulls.. How often do you interact with your herd bulls each and every day ???????
 

Loch Valley Fold

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What a lot of people fail to see is that a cute & cuddly bottle baby is going to grow up with hormones, while now it may be fun to play games & treat it as a family pet its going to get big, than its not fun to have that same animal come running at you bouncing around like it did as a baby. I've seen the same thing happen with bottle raised beef bulls through to bottle raised foals.
We don't raise our Jersey bulls alone but in a group with the heifers we'll usually keep 2 bulls & we cull very hard on temperament including the cows & can usually keep a bull for 5-6 years before we need to move him on.
Temperament is as Temperament does
 

alexfarms

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This past summer we used an 18 month old ET bull that was raised on a bottle because his recip mother wouldn't claim him. Hmmmm, might have to keep an eye on him. I am probably going to think about this article everytime I turn my back on him now.
 
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