General information

Systems and methods of keeping cattle


In the summer, a cow, whose feeding in the household is most often carried out in a loose-housing way, is grazed. Usually in the villages a shepherd gathers cows every morning, takes them to a pasture for the whole day and returns home in the evening. Being in a large group contributes to the normal physical and psychological development of the animal. The factor of control over the composition of groups is very important, since the new cow in the herd or the aggressive behavior of any individual have a negative effect on the milk productivity of the others.

In summer, a cow, the maintenance of which is a daily hard work, can be on a walking area with an obligatory canopy that protects from rain and hot sunlight. A shed with an obligatory salt-licensed briquette, an important component involved in bone formation, improving appetite, increasing feed absorption, and being an excellent preventive measure against diseases for young animals, is also installed under a shed.

Feeding features

Feeding cows in the summer consists of pasture, vegetables and fruits from the backyard are used as complementary foods. In winter, the basis of the diet is harvested hay, straw, roots, as well as mineral and vitamin supplements. Animals should be given warm warm water at the rate of about 80-100 liters of fluid per day for 1 head.

For the productive keeping of livestock, it is very important to accustom yourself and the animals to a clearly defined daily routine, to adhere to the same intervals between milking and feeding. A cow, the maintenance of which requires a certain investment, with an average yield of 15–20 liters should be fed 3 times a day. When milk production exceeds 20 liters, the number of meals and milking increases up to 4-5 times.

Contents on farms: loose stitch

The loose housing maintenance is also used in farms with large livestock numbers (from 400 heads and more). Previously, it was common in beef cattle, today it is increasingly used in dairy production.

Cows are created as close as possible to the natural conditions with the freedom of movement in spacious rooms and on walking areas. Manure is usually harvested twice a year, animals are provided with deep, constant bedding of straw, sawdust, peat. It is important to daily pour a new layer of litter, preventing it from getting completely wet.

Some farms use the technology of processing manure with its division into 2 components: the liquid fraction stored in large ditches with further use as fertilizer, and the solid part used as bedding.

A feature of the loose housing system is the unobstructed access of livestock to coarse fodder located directly on the territory of the cattle-breeding complex: under a shed, on land pits, in silos. Distribution of feed in the room is made in case of bad weather conditions. Watering of animals is carried out using group auto-drinkers.

The advantages of the stray method

The advantages of the stray way is active exercise, which has a positive effect on the health of animals, enhancing their immunity and improving milkiness. At such farms, labor costs are significantly reduced and great importance is attached to the mechanization of work, which consists in the use of modern equipment: for milking, transportation, and primary processing of milk.

The disadvantage of this type of livestock on large farms is often the ill-conceived breeding scheme, which leads to increased humidity, untimely manure and gas pollution, which is detrimental to the health of cows.

In the stray way, a prerequisite for the livestock complex is the presence of the maternity ward. There is a cow left, the content of which requires particularly careful attention to the animal, is about 1.5 months (the period of its maximum feeding). Then it is transferred to the main group, and its milk production is taken into account.

Content tethered

The traditional method used in dairy farms, is tethered cows. Cattle are in stalls equipped with fixation devices: clamp, chain, mechanical or automatic. The average length of the stall is from 1.8 to 2.0 meters so that the cow can freely assume a lying position. All the stalls are equipped with metal grilles, through which the animal's excrement falls into the manure.

All operations related to the maintenance of the animal, are carried out right there in the stalls, the equipment of which includes:

  • tether and metal frame for fixing the tether,
  • feeder (about 70 cm wide),
  • stall,
  • manure transport channel.

Key processes

The distribution of feed is carried out using stationary or mobile dispensers in feeders made of waterproof materials (metal, concrete). At the bottom of the feeders, which are located 5-7 cm above the stall bed, there are holes for the drainage of liquid residues after washing and disinfection.

Milking of cows is carried out using portable milking machines. This operation requires a large investment of manual labor, in order to reduce the cost of which it is recommended to mount high-performance milking machines in special rooms.

Advantages and disadvantages of the tethered method

Benefits of the tethered content method:

  • normalized feeding of the animal, taking into account productivity and age,
  • 5-7 tons of milk per year. That is exactly what a cow can give, the content of which is carried out in compliance with all technological norms and standards,
  • decrease in injuries of calves during ripening,
  • Improved processing of feed into fat and muscle mass.

The disadvantages include:

  • a high percentage of manual labor (caring for animals, cleaning the stalls, monitoring the state of the cows, conducting therapeutic and preventive measures),
  • the harsh working conditions of the machine milking operators, who are forced to drag the milking machines over the barn, repeatedly squat near each animal).

Ways to keep cows: what to choose?

The method of keeping cows using different methods of organizing labor, milking, feeding, and cleaning manure is decisive in applying various technologies for producing meat and milk from cattle. For dairy production, the most convenient is the tethered content, the disadvantages of which can be attributed to the deterioration of labor productivity, the complication of reproduction, the lack of active exercise in animals. This technology of cows requires a small area of ​​the premises, facilitates the work of veterinarians, allows you to feed the animals individually.

With loose housing, there is no need for a large number of personnel; animals move actively and feed from common feeders. Complicated work of veterinarians and livestock specialists: they are required to take more action to provide medical procedures and keep records of reproduction.

Content Systems

Modern farming accepts two main systems of cattle keeping: stall and grazing. Each technique is based on its own nuances and requirements for compliance with certain technical rules.

The use of the stall system is appropriate for large suburban enterprises. Animals live on plowed land. This system is used if there is a high concentration of livestock in the farming trusteeship. The organization of optimal living conditions begins with providing animals with extended walking areas.

Technological operations, in particular, feeding and milking, are carried out in a limited area. Cows are fed with concentrated feed and impurities. Animals do not leave their habitat, which limits their ability to consume fresh grass. This is only possible in the summer.

The disadvantage of stalling is the low index of cattle health and productivity. This is due to the lack of motor activity and other limitations. Stable way conventionally divided into:

The stall-grazing system is used exclusively on the farm provided with fodder lands. A high level of productivity is achieved by batch grazing using electroshepherds. Grazing of animals begins in the spring, when the height of the green is about 15 cm. With good quality grass, one cattle eats about 75 kg of green mass. This has a positive effect on overall well-being and guarantees moderate weight gain. The amount of milk produced depends on quality feeding. Subject to the consumption of 75 kg of greenery, one cow gives 18 liters of products daily.

The stall-camp system is appropriate if agricultural land does not have enough greenery. Animals are kept in special rooms, remote from pastures. Feeding is carried out with concentrated feed and additives. The advantage of this method of content is the rational use of all the benefits of seasonal and weather conditions.


The pasture system has many advantages. Its use is considered cost effective. Farmers do not spend finances on fodder, providing animals with greenery, in conditions of pastures. The constant stay of cows in the fresh air has a positive effect on their overall well-being, helps to improve health and increase productivity. Animals are always active, puberty is correct, the organs and systems of the body are strong.

Receiving benefits from this system of maintenance is possible only if the agricultural land is equipped with a territory with dense greenery. On bare pastures, the animal does not get enough nutrients, which reduces productivity and adversely affects the health indicators.

When choosing a territory for keeping cows, it is necessary to consider not only the density of greenery, but also the presence of water bodies. Animals should receive a sufficient amount of feed and fluids. It is advisable to choose an area with trees, or in case of their absence, install awnings. Shadow must be present in a mandatory manner, this will save the cattle from overheating.

Content in the pasture system

The content in the conditions of the pasture system has its own nuances:

  • grazing is prohibited during frosts,
  • the animal is not displayed in the open after rain,
  • grazing is possible after the grass has completely dried,
  • in the summer period, walking is carried out exclusively in places close to the watering,
  • when grazing, it is necessary to take into account the movement of livestock, animals should not get stuck in heaps,
  • special care is required when forming the herd,
  • place grazing animals are supplied with salt licker.

To provide livestock with the necessary amount of liquid, the use of natural groundwater or atmospheric water is appropriate. A mandatory daily ration of livestock is supplemented with mineral supplements. It is necessary to feed the animal 3-4 times a day, in summer - at least 5 times.

Reference. The animal sleeps in a specially equipped room with a developed infrastructure. Livestock should have plenty of room to rest. Additionally, the room is equipped with a water supply source.

Ways of content

Methods of keeping cattle include two main options: tethered and loose. Each method is appropriate in certain cases, has its own characteristics and nuances.

The most common and widely used method of keeping cattle is tethered method. Animals live in stalls, where optimal conditions for their existence are created. Each room is equipped with mechanical devices that fix livestock with tethers. This allows you to control the activities of animals and fully automate the process of care and milking.

Fastened way of keeping cows

Feeding is carried out in stalls with specially equipped feeders. Combined and concentrated feeds are widely used. The amount of food is calculated depending on the weight category of the cattle and its dairy performance. Water is supplied to each stall without fail. Resting animal in the same place, for his comfortable stay using special flooring. Milking is carried out with the use of automated portable devices. Their use greatly speeds up and simplifies the process of obtaining dairy products. Automated portable devices are used at a high concentration of livestock.

Animals are constantly on bring, live alone or in groups. Much depends on their size and gender. Tethered method of maintenance allows you to achieve the highest performance, making it popular among farm and agricultural land.


Loose method extends the capabilities of the cow. The animal is able to move independently in the designated area, eating fresh grass. In the winter period of time, feeding is carried out with the use of concentrated feed and impurities. Resting cattle on deep bedding or in boxes.

In modern farming, loose-fitting method based on staying in boxing has been widely used. Developed countries have been using this technique for several decades. It provides the animal with all the necessary conditions for living, increasing the productivity and quality of dairy products.

Milking of cows is carried out in special milking devices. On developed farms, manual labor is not used. All processes are fully automated. This reduces time and cost. One milking plant can serve two or three herds at the same time.

Boxing loose housing content is based on a specific schedule. Animals are sent for feeding or milking machine on time. This action allows you to work out a specific schedule, increase productivity and reduce the cost of manual labor.

Box free stall

The main advantage of loose housing is the creation of optimal conditions for animals. Cattle perform all activities (feeding, rest, milking) on ​​a specific schedule. The optimized modern process of keeping has a positive effect on the general well-being of animals and the quality of the dairy products.

Rules for keeping cattle

Approved veterinary rules for keeping cattle allow creating optimal conditions for the normal existence of animals. They are based on the requirements for landscaping, sewage system, microclimate, health monitoring, feeding, watering and milking.

According to the approved rules, the place of stay of cattle must be fenced with a solid fence. Sanitary inspection and disinfection barriers are installed in each territory. Entrance and exit of transport is carried out through a specially designated gate. A checkpoint is organized on a mandatory basis, which prevents unauthorized persons from entering the barn territory.

Farm or agricultural land is equipped with a sewage system. It allows you to eliminate not only animal waste, but also to eliminate precipitation. The premises in which animals live are equipped with toilets. According to experts, it is advisable to provide a method for disinfecting manure.

To increase the level of animal performance, it is necessary to create a certain microclimate in the stalls. The premises are equipped with adequate lighting and ventilation system. The room must be dry and clean. Condensate formation is completely excluded. The optimum air temperature should not exceed 10-12 degrees at a humidity of 75-80%. The temperature index must be observed and not allowed to fluctuate. At low temperatures, animals experience stress, which negatively affects their overall well-being.

Temperature conditions are crucial.

For animals set special control. Growing stock is carried out according to special rules. So, animals need to be provided with concentrated feed and abundant drinking in accordance with the developed algorithm. This takes into account age requirements and physiological features. Кормление осуществляется с использованием безопасных кормов, которые полностью соответствуют качеству и обеспечивают животное необходимым количеством полезных компонентов.Feed change is carried out gradually, within 5-10 days.

Important! Water used for watering must fully comply with sanitary norms and rules. Its temperature index is 8-12 degrees.


The choice of method of keeping cattle depends on the possibilities of farm and agricultural land. The main thing is to follow the basic rules and regulations and not to evade approved requirements. Regardless of the method of housing, animals must live in well-established conditions. This action will create a comfortable stay, which guarantees high performance and a positive effect on the quality of dairy products.