Synopses & Reviews
Homegrown Dairy Products, Fresh from Your Yard
A single cow, carefully chosen for your needs and facilities, can live a healthy, contented life right in your backyard. Calm and friendly by nature, your cow will be a gentle companion and a valued contributor to your family's diet, producing more than enough milk to keep you out of your supermarket's dairy aisle.
The essential beginner's guide to:
*Choosing a breed. Select the backyard cow that makes the most sense for your climate, grazing land, and price range.
*Developing cow sense. See the world as your cow does and you will both be safer.
*Caring for cattle. Breed your dairy cow, feed and groom her well, provide proper shelter, and identify and treat common diseases.
*Milking. Create a daily routine.
*Processing your daily milk. Keep your milk fresh and healthful with proper cooling and storing.
*Making cheese. Use your daily milk to make butter, yogurt, cheese, and other fresh, fermented, and aged dairy products.
*Riding steers. Yes, you can ride your steer or cow!
You don't need acres of land to keep a cow healthy, happy, and productive. You can raise one right in your own backyard, producing more than enough milk for a single family--up to six gallons per day! The Backyard Cow covers everything you need to know, from selecting the right breed to understanding your cow's behavior; providing shelter, health care, and daily maintenance; grooming; milking; and making cheese, yogurt, and other dairy products from your milk.
About the Author
Sue Weaver and her husband share their ridgetop farmette in the Ozarks with an array of animal friends, including poultry, sheep, goats, horses, a donkey who thinks she's a horse, two llamas, a pet razorback pig, and two steers--a Jersey-Holstein and a water buffalo. Her many books include The Backyard Cow
, The Backyard Goat, Storey's Guide to Raising Miniature Livestock,
and The Donkey Companion.
Table of Contents
Part 1: Meet the Cow
1 Brief History
First Came the Aurochs * What Is a Cow?
2 The Breed You Need
Choosing a Breed * Heritage Breeds * Additional Breeds * Zebu Breeds
3 Applied Cattle Psychology
Cattle Behavior 101 * Moving Cattle
4 Buying Your Cow or Steer
Basic Considerations * Where (and Where Not) to Buy * Bringing Bossy Home
Part 2: Have Fun 'Til the Cows Come Home
Home Dairying Basics * Hand Milking * Raw or Pasteurized? * Freezing Milk
6 Homemade Dairy Products
Cheese Making at a Glance * Butter * Buttermilk * Simple Soft Cheeses * Yogurt * Quark * Kefir * Beastings * Koumiss
7 Riding Steers
Before You Begin * Tack for Riding Steers (and Cows) * Training Your Steer to Ride
8 Raise a Calf
Start with a Healthy Calf * Housing Your Calf * Feeding Your Calf * A 4-H Bucket Calf Project
Part 3: Care for Your Cow
9 Mating and Birthing
Breeding Your Cow * Calving 101
10 Shelter, Equipment, Pasture, and Fences
Shelter * Everyday Equipment * Pasture * Keeping Your Cow in Place
The Bovine Digestive System * Concentrates * Water * Feeders and Water Receptacles * Feed-Related Health Concerns
12 Grooming, Hoof Care, and Parasite Control
Grooming and Hoof Care * Internal Parasites * External Parasites
13 Health Care
Checking Vital Signs * Cattle Diseases at a Glance * Medicating Your Cow or Steer
Appendix 1: Restraint
Halter and Tie * Nose Tongs * Tailing
Appendix 2: Clicker Training
Equipment and Supplies * Basic Targeting * Teaching to Follow a Target * Leading
Appendix 3: Emergency Euthanasia