How much to feed a calf?

Asked by: Dr. Daphney Durgan Jr.
Score: 4.4/5 (11 votes)

Calves should be fed daily approximately 10% of their body weight (1 quart of milk weighs 2 pounds). For example, a Holstein calf weighing 90 pounds at birth would be fed 4.5 quarts (9 pints) of milk daily or 2.25 quarts per feeding when fed twice daily.

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In this manner, How many pounds of feed does a calf need?

pound calf will need to consume in the neighborhood of 7 to 8 pounds of grain daily. Small amounts of hay will compliment the grain ration for these 8 to 12 week old animals.

Secondly, How much milk do you feed a calf?. As a guide milk should be fed at 10% of the calf's body weight per day. Thus, a 30kg calf should be fed at least 3L of whole milk per day. Start baby and weak calves on 250mL of milk, five times a day for the first 24–48 hours and work up to 2L twice a day.

Also, Can you overfeed a calf?

It's important that you do not overfeed your bottle calves. Calves will eat until they are sick. ... But feed only the recommended amount; overfeeding can cause overeating disease, a bacterial disorder that will quickly kill calves.

How much should a 400 lb calf eat?

A full feed of good-quality corn silage supplemented with protein, minerals and Vitamin A will produce from 1.5 to 1.8 pounds of daily gain on a 400- to 500-pound calf. Some grain additions will usually be needed to get 2.0 pounds daily gain.

18 related questions found

Is Cracked corn good for calves?

Corn is included in cattle diets to increase the energy concentration of the diet. ... Corn can be fed whole with excellent results, but cracking or rolling it will increase digestibility by 5-10%. Although this improvement in digestibility can be important, it may not be enough to pay for the cost of processing the grain.

How much feed does a 500-pound calf eat?

In general, a full feed of forage sorghum silage and 4 pounds of a soybean meal-grain supplement a head daily has given 1.7 to 2.0 pounds daily gain for 450- to 500-pound calves fed 125 days.

What to do for a calf that won't eat?

Fortunately there is another option for feeding a calf with no appetite–tube feeding. Tube feeding is necessary in calves that need nutrition or fluids, but cannot or will not drink from a bottle. It works by passing a soft plastic tube into the calf's esophagus.

How do you know if a calf is getting enough milk?

A simple system is to give the calf a tag with the same number as its mother. Calves that look cold, hunched up, and droopy should be suspected of not getting enough milk. A quick check of his mom's udder (either tight and overfull or flat and milk-less) will often reveal the reason this calf looks hungry.

How long does a calf need milk?

Usually, a calf should stay on milk or milk replacer until he is at least four-months-old. Don't wean him off milk until he is eating an adequate amount of high-quality forage along with some grain pellets.

When can a calf start eating feed?

In early weaning systems calves need to begin eating some grain by 2 weeks of age to allow enough rumen development to occur before weaning at 5 or 6 weeks of age. If we do a good job of managing grain intake, it is possible to wean calves at 6 weeks, even when milk feeding rates are high.

How many times a day should a calf be fed?

Calves should be fed daily approximately 10% of their birth body weight (1 quart of milk weighs 2 pounds). For example, a Holstein calf weighing 90 pounds at birth would be fed 4.5 quarts (9 pints) of milk daily or 2.25 quarts per feeding when fed twice daily.

At what age do calves start eating grass?

Calves normally start to nibble on grass or hay within 1 or 2 days of being born. Calves start ruminating to some degree when they're about 2 weeks old, with their rumen fully developed by 90 days of age.

What to feed a calf after weaning?

Try to limit silage and other familiar feeds. So, the calf is offered half of 1.0 or 0.5 percent of body weight of a weaning ration or pellet and half of 1 percent of body weight of good quality grass hay. * Positioning the feed is as important as the feed itself.

How long does it take a calf to reach 500 lbs?

It will take over a year (367 days) to grow a 500-pound calf to 1,000 pounds if its average daily weight gain is 1.5 pounds per day. Some exten sive forage-finishing systems may require a longer duration for calves to reach slaughter weight if forage quality and quantity restrict growth to no more than 1 pound per day.

How many pounds of corn does it take to finish a steer?

10-15 lbs. per day of corn, oats or barley fed to grazing cattle is a good finishing ration. This fed to a 900-1000 pound steer for 3-4 months should will you a nicely finished animal.

What can I give a weak calf?

Even the highest-energy electrolyte products have a small amount of total energy, so he recommends colostrum or milk replacers to help treat weak calves.

How do you tell if a cow has a dead calf inside?

Absence of the vital signs, sloughing of the hair or foul odors may indicate the calf is dead.

Will cows stop eating when they are full?

If the nutrient concentration is such that it meets the cow's requirements, cows with unlimited access to this high quality hay, will eat more than they need. Over-eating a forage will likely not hurt the cow, but will increase feed costs.

Why would a calf stop eating?

There's Something Wrong with the Water

horses… sheep… pigs do not have water or water they are willing to drink, they will stop eating. ... So if your calf goes off feed, check the water first.

What causes a calf not to eat?

A loss of appetite in cattle can stem from numerous reasons, including: Stress: Stress disrupts the pH of the rumen, which can lead to decreased feed intake. Infection: If you notice your cattle are not eating, they may have a disease or virus.

Can you feed a calf lying down?

Calves only should be fed with a tube feeder if they can stand, or at least sit upright on their sternum. If they are lying flat or their digestive tract already is full, do not use a tube feeder, because it is much more likely you will insert the tube incorrectly and potentially drown the calf.

How much creep feed will a calf eat?

Ideally, calves will consume 1% of their body weight per day of a self-limiting creep feed. You can keep calves on Purina RangeLand® Calf Creep or transition them onto other feeds like Accuration® Cattle Limiter, Accu-Creep or Range Supplement 33 mixed with corn, before weaning.

How much weight will a calf gain on grass?

To start with, at least a minimum average daily gain of 2 pounds per day should be expected and certainly achieved during the normal growing season for calves and yearlings. In reality, 2.25 to 2.5 pounds per day during the entire forage-growing season may be a reachable goal.