Have I told you that we keep our calf with our cow? It is a nice arrangement.
- We get all the milk we want.
The calf milks the cow for us if we don’t want to.
The cow raises the calf.
Then we get a freezer full of beef. For almost free.
You have probably heard of grain-fed or grass-fed beef. Grain-fed Beef is marbled and tender. Grass-fed Beef is healthy and full of omega-3. Beef raise on momma’s milk beats them all.
The best beef I’ve ever eaten was raised on grass & milk. Period. Hands down. It’s healthy like grass-fed beef and tasty like the grain-fed beef. I think it’s the best of both worlds.
It’s sometimes called “Milk & Meadow.”
Our steer was on pasture his entire life. He ate grass, quality dry-hay, and all the milk he wanted. We never weaned him. He went straight from nursing his mom to the…… um……. freezer.
See this cute little thing?
He went from adorable baby to this:
In 9 months.
Most folks wean the steer from the mamma around 6-8 months. Then they raise them on grass/ hay & finish them with some grain until they are about 18 months old.
There was NO WAY we could keep Henry around until he was 18 months old. My husband would have kept him 10 years. My husband thought Henry was his dog.
Unfortunately for Henry, we have 4 small people that live here and want to continue to live. So, when Henry reach about 700 pounds he was a goner.
We went on vacation when Henry was 9 months old. He milked the cow for us while we were away. When we returned it was time for Henry to go.
Henry wasn’t scheduled at the processor for another 2 weeks after we returned. Henry just got bigger and wilder every day. One afternoon he knocked his sweet mama down while he was nursing. After that, we considered separating him and Faith for those last 2 weeks…
We were advised to keep Henry on Faith for the remaining 2 weeks, even though he was huge. Some wiser, more experienced cattle folks told us that when a calf is weaned it can be hard on them. We were told that we could expect Henry to lose up to 150 pounds the first week he was weaned (not to mention be very sad).
To keep everyone happy and healthy, we decided to keep the cows together until the end. It worked out fine.
Good bye Henry!