Dairycattle Essentials
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Dairycattle Essentials






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    Dairycattle Essentials Dairycattle Essentials Presentation Transcript

    • Dairy Cattle Essentials Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Topics to Discuss
      • The following topics will be discussed:
      • Selection
      • Facilities
      • Nutrition
      • Health
      • Management
      • Show Rules & Health Requirement
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Selection
      • Dairy heifer should excel in frame, body capacity, and dairy character
      • Should be growthy and well developed based on her age
      • Shows age divisions are typically divided on a 3 month break- Ex. March, June, September, December
      • All major shows require heifers to be registered and papers transferred to the exhibitor prior to the ownership date listed in show’s premium list
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Selection cont.
      • Most common breeds
        • Holstein
        • Jersey
        • Brown Swiss
      • Southwestern Exposition & Livestock Show (Fort Worth), San Antonio Livestock Exposition, Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo, State Fair of Texas, Heart of Texas Fair (Waco), South Plains Fair (Lubbock) accept the above breeds.
      • Open shows in Fort Worth, San Antonio, Houston, Dallas, and Lubbock allow junior exhibitors to double enter and show in both Junior and Open divisions
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Facilities
      • Heifers should be kept in a large pen that is well drained, sheltered from rain and wind, and preferably opened to the south.
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Nutrition
      • Clean fresh water available at all times is very important.
      • High quality coastal or hybrid sudan and a 16-18 percent textured grain is ideal depending on age
      • A 1:1 calcium phosphorous mineral is also very important along with loose white salt
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Health
      • Should be vaccinated (Brucellosis) between 4-6 months of age
      • Free of ectoparasites and internal parasites
      • Use only approved insecticides, wormers, and vaccines for dairy cattle
      • Other vaccinations should include: Lepto – Vibrio, IBR, PI3, BVD, BRSW, and Blackleg/Clostridia complex
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Management
      • Heifer should be taught to lead as early as possible.
      • Rope halter should be used
      • Make sure halter does not get wet and shrink into the head
      • Work daily to train heifer to lead and stand properly
      • Brushing hair is excellent way to maintain hair and gentle animal
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Management cont.
      • Consider hoof trimming early in the feeding process
      • Keeping pen well drained and dry will encourage harder hoof development and less hoof problems
      • Consider breeding heifers at 15-16 months of age.
      • Timing to targeted shows and to calve during ideal class breaking months is important
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Management cont.
      • AI sire should be used with high predicted difference of milk, milkfat %, protein % and type scores will add value to the heifer if sold as a bred heifer
      • Management to calving and post calving is critical
      • Can be difficult to keep cows healthy during this time.
      • Proper nutrition to avoid calving difficulty is important.
      • After calving arrange for the cow to be milked at dairy(prevents udder damage)
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Show Rules and Health Requirement
      • Read rules for each show attending to identify specific rules.
      • Each show will vary
      • Check on Certificate of Veterinary Inspection and requirements for negative brucellosis and negative tuberculosis tests
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Additional questions to address with Exhibitors
      • What are the goals of the 4-H member and family?
      • Do you wish to exhibit a dairy heifer?
      • Have you developed a plan to appropriately care for your project after her first calf? (Milking arrangements)
      • Do you need assistance in locating and selecting your project?
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development
    • Conclusions
      • All aspects of the selection process should be understood.
      • Proper facilities should be available.
      • Proper diets and nutritional information about feeding dairy heifers should be identified.
      • Health is one of the most important aspects of raising dairy heifers.
      • Time must be spent with heifer to ensure she can lead and stand properly
      • All rules should be followed in regards to registration and health papers.
      Texas 4-H and Youth Development