Holstein cows....

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eric

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I have a neighbor who raises 5 Holstein cows and a couple of calves. I went over to see his new Charlaise bull this morning and see how the cows he had with him in the pen were doing and noticed something strange. Are holsteins supposed to be very skinny? I know they are thinner than beef breeds, but these were really very very thin, to the point where the ribs are showing and the hip bones are protruding quite a bit! There are 2 cows (the skinny ones) and the bull in a pen about 50 ft. diameter with a big round bale in there, so there is hay for them to eat, but they sure seemed thin, especially compared to the beefmasters I got last month! Should I be concerned? And if so, how would you approach the owner of these animals? We are good neighbors who help each other out when we need help, but we aren't like beer drinking buddies or anything, so I would need to be kinda tactful if possible!

:?: Any suggestions? Mind my own business?
 

dun

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Holsteins alwasy look poor. But go and look at a dairy and see how the neighbors compare with those. You may notice that his are in pretty good shape in comparison unless he's milking his. Also, Holsteins look raunchier and raunchier as they age. A 6-7 yr old Holstein looks to be all bone.
Remember too, just because they have hay doesn't mean that they are getting adequate nutrition. Or they may require worming, or...............
Older Hoslteins tend to look humped up. Don't know why, but that's the nature of the beast.



dun
 
A

Anonymous

Hello:
Well most modern Holstein bloodlines here in the USA that are sired from some of the top AI sirers are noted for not being that feed effence.
There ablity to graise has been bred out and there are a few other genetic problems as well.
If you have noticed how the Holstien breed of cattle is traised back to a few bulls from the 1950's. There are a few cattle geneticst that are opening there mouths and are asking the question why on earth did people breed the graising ablity and the feed effencey out of there holstein cattle.

Here in the west there are large dairies with large numbers of Holstein cows that they can not get rebred and there spending all high dollars on high tech to get the cows breed, in milk and rebred. A few breeders are looking at the data and finding out some of the bulls that sirer cows that milk over 40,000 lbs of milk are out of bloodlines that are noted for not rebreeding fast and are noted for being open for a long time to be rebred!

Take the time and pick up any major dairy publication and you will notice there are more add for different types and kinds of cattle medication's. One of the largest markets they have is the holstein dairies.

More and more Holstein breeders are becoming more aware that things have to change for the betterment of the Holstein breed.
One of the bigest problems here in the west is with the large holstein dairy's is the heifers are buring out faster in younger lacations. There not able to produce in what should be a normaly lacation! The bigest cost here in the west is dairy replacement heifers! The number of younger cattle in production that are being culled is going up each year and no one whats to ask the right questions why and what needs to be done!

There now trying to do a few quick fixes to the problems by importing a few breeds from Europe to cross with holstein's but that will not fix the problem that is with in the Holstein breed! It will only cover things up and the same direction that has been going on with the holstein breed will still move in the same direction!

Regards
Lee
 

A. delaGarza

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several Holstein breeders are crossbreeding their Hols. with Normande that way they will be more beefy and won't loose milk production

eric":3otoelpv said:
I have a neighbor who raises 5 Holstein cows and a couple of calves. I went over to see his new Charlaise bull this morning and see how the cows he had with him in the pen were doing and noticed something strange. Are holsteins supposed to be very skinny? I know they are thinner than beef breeds, but these were really very very thin, to the point where the ribs are showing and the hip bones are protruding quite a bit! There are 2 cows (the skinny ones) and the bull in a pen about 50 ft. diameter with a big round bale in there, so there is hay for them to eat, but they sure seemed thin, especially compared to the beefmasters I got last month! Should I be concerned? And if so, how would you approach the owner of these animals? We are good neighbors who help each other out when we need help, but we aren't like beer drinking buddies or anything, so I would need to be kinda tactful if possible!

:?: Any suggestions? Mind my own business?
 
A

Anonymous

first off holsteins have been bred for milk production they are very good at it ie. highly efficient, they havenot been bred for beef therfore are not going to be good for putting weight on without a higher plane of nutrition. an old round bale in a corral doesn't cut it, even traditional beef breeds would lose condition. getting cows rebred is a challenge but the vast majority of dairy farms use ai not natural service, because of this the conception is only as good as the heat detection, people can be easily distracted, bulls live for it. there are several seasonal dairies around here who have mostly holsteins. we rotational graze ours with no problems. its not the genetics its different management styles that cause cows to get even dumber and forget how to graze. remember we are human we know more than mother nature. properly fed/cared for holsteins don't get "humped up" looking when they age any more than any other breed. no matter what you breed a holstein to you will lose milk you may gain fat% protein% or beef production but you will always lose milk in the next generation. part of the western dairy problem is the college learning the managers received. they all think they have to push the cows to the breaking point in order to maximize profits all the while costing themselves more in the long run. they are more worried about how many cows they push thru the parlor / hr, or how much milk they average / day than working with the natural abilities of the cow. it would be the same if you were to take a herd of range cattle and confine them to a feedlot for several generations. you would have better control over output but at what cost? facilities, meds,supplements,feed,labor,etc. ok i've ranted enough for now have a good day and stay warm!!!!!!
 
A

Anonymous

eric":55b3sgoo said:
I have a neighbor who raises 5 Holstein cows and a couple of calves. I went over to see his new Charlaise bull this morning and see how the cows he had with him in the pen were doing and noticed something strange. Are holsteins supposed to be very skinny? I know they are thinner than beef breeds, but these were really very very thin, to the point where the ribs are showing and the hip bones are protruding quite a bit! There are 2 cows (the skinny ones) and the bull in a pen about 50 ft. diameter with a big round bale in there, so there is hay for them to eat, but they sure seemed thin, especially compared to the beefmasters I got last month! Should I be concerned? And if so, how would you approach the owner of these animals? We are good neighbors who help each other out when we need help, but we aren't like beer drinking buddies or anything, so I would need to be kinda tactful if possible!

:?: Any suggestions? Mind my own business?

Leave him a alone and raise your fences to keep your beefmasters in.
 

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