Raising cattle can be fun and profitable at the same time. But it requires a lot of hard works and regular duties. If you are planning for raising cattle, then you are probably thinking about how to raise cattle and other common/regular tasks related to raising cattle for making profit.
There are several ways for raising cattle. Although how the cattle are raised not only depends on the individual raising them, but also depends on the breed, type and class of cattle. For example, the dairy cows are generally kept and raised differently from the beef cows. The dairy cows require a lot of care and management, while the beef cows require relatively less care.
However, whether you are going to raise cattle either for milk or for beef or for any other purposes, this beginner’s guide for raising cattle is going to be very helpful for your operation.
Guide for Raising Cattle
You need to take proper care of your animals for getting maximum results from your herd. Follow the steps mentioned below for raising cattle and also for keeping your herd healthy and making more profit.
Determine the Purpose
First of all, determine the purpose of your cattle farm. You can raise cattle commercially for milk and also for beef production. You can also raise cattle for other purposes such as pet or companion. Whether your purpose is, determine it first, and go ahead.
After determining the purpose, purchase cattle from any existing farm or from market. Purchase good quality cows if you want to start a dairy cow farming business. And choose heifers or bulls if you want to raise cattle for beef. Read this guide for buying cattle.
Feeding and Pasture Management
Quality feeding is very important for raising cattle. You can’t raise cattle if you don’t have anything to feed them or no pasture for the animals to graze on. So, you have to ensure the availability of feed and pasture before purchasing animals.
Cattle generally eat hay, grass, grain and silage. Actually the types of feed you want to provide to your animals depends on what type of cattle you are raising. The type of feed also depend on your goals and location. For example, you will require silage and grain for fattening purpose, you can raise a beef cow-calf herd on just grass and hay, and the dairy cattle generally require most hay in the form of haylage.
You need to allow your animals to graze, especially if you are raising dairy cows. For pasture grazing, ensure you have an adequate stocking rate for avoiding overgrazing.
You have to manage other enterprises such as crops, hay and silage for raising cattle. Because producing feeds of your own will cost you less money.
A good shelter with all required facilities will be good for raising cattle. The shelter should have all types of bedding, resting and other types of materials ready inside. The shelter/house should also have to be free from all types of predators.
Herd Health Program
Always try to maintain a good herd health program. It is especially imperative if you are purchasing cattle and bringing them into your herd (because new cattle could be carriers of many diseases and that may affect your current herd). Vaccinating, de-worming and de-licing are just not a herd health program. The aim of maintaining herd health program is also to prevent unwanted health conditions as well.
You have to ensure vaccinating and applying de-worming and de-licing medicines timely. Contact any vet in your area for better recommendation.
You should keep and maintain good records of your cattle farm operation. You can keep records either by simple paper records or through highly detailed computerized worksheets. The records should include health , breeding, calving and financial records.
Raising cattle commercially for making profit will require a handsome amount of capital. You can either arrange the capital of your own, or from your friends or family members. Bank loan is also a good option for starting. Contact any of your nearest bank’s branch for knowing more about the procedures.
Marketing Your Products
Before starting any farming or production business, it’s wise to determine the market first. You should know when, where and how to market or sell your products or animals before start raising cattle. You can take the animals or products in your nearest market, advertise locally and also through online classifieds and you can also sell your products or animals directly from your farm.
Dealing With Deadstock
When you are raising cattle, it’s entirely expected that you may end up having a dead animal or more on your hands to deal with. So it’s better to know how to deal with the deadstock. For determining what is best to dispose of a dead animal’s body, you need to research your local livestock disposal laws.
If you follow all the steps mentioned above, then you will definitely be able keep your animals healthy and productive. And this will eventually increase your profit from cattle business.