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Miniature Cattle

| 3/10/2010 10:33:00 AM

Tags: Cattle, Farming, Beef,

A photo of the Modern Day RedneckI was trying to figure out what I could raise on such a small farm besides the normal chickens, rabbits and pygmy goats. I do not want a bunch of hogs to worry about. One or two meat hogs are ok but any more than that and I create fencing and odor problems. So I figured why not Miniature Cattle?

Mostly kept as a hobby and only measuring under 42 inches tall, miniatures do have many advantages:

  • Small efficient beef for “backyard beef.”
  • Good pets to keep on small acreages as little as 1/2 acre.
  • Use to qualify property for agriculture use status.
  • Use for investment groups.
  • Great for 4-H or FFA projects.
  • Good potential to develop a gourmet meat market.
  • Most breeds eat 1/3 the food of large breeds.
  • Not as harsh on the land and the fencing.

As in large cattle, miniatures have many different breeds. Some of the more popular ones are:

Miniature Zebu

Miniature Zebu, Twister
Miniature Zebu, LLL Twister, photo courtesy Lipperts Exotics. 

Miniature Zebu are one of the smallest breeds, and the only true miniature breed that has not been bred down to get their size. However, Zebu cattle are known to be one of the oldest breeds of cattle, possible dating back as far as 6000 B.C. Mature cows should be 300 to 500 pounds; mature bulls from 400 to 600 pounds, and are still extremely rare (about 550 purebred animals in USA) They come in gray red black and the painted color pattern like the bull above, and the babies are a sight to behold looking a lot like a little fawn at birth weighing from 12 to 22 pounds. The advantage of the miniature zebu is that they are better adapted to heat and have a high resistance to disease than most European breeds (they come from India). The maximum allowable height is just over 42 inches behind the hump.

Miniature Longhorn

Miniature Longhorn, LLL Royal Flush
Miniature Longhorn, LLL Royal Flush, photo courtesy Lipperts Exotics. 

10/25/2015 9:16:01 AM

Thanks for the info, Rattlerjake. I've been considering Dexters and it really helps to know someone else's experience with them.

10/23/2015 9:01:22 PM

A friend of mine raised Angus for many years, he complained of their ornery, skittish nature and their destructiveness on pasture and fences. He recently switched to Dexters and has nothing but praise for these small cattle. He has stated how calm and friendly they are, and not destructive at all. His biggest gripe is finding breeding stock.

Almost Country_1
4/20/2010 9:02:19 PM

Thanks for the info! I had no idea miniature cattle are available. Very useful! Colleen

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