We’ve all seen the commercials on TV… “Happy Cows come from California”. Well, that may be true, but they also come from Nebraska and all over the country for that matter. All dairy farmers know that taking good care of our cows makes them happy and healthy. We don’t care for our animals because someone tells us to, we care for them because we care about them. On a dairy farm, Cows are our livelihood. We are caring for them every day of the year.
(Photo at right: 7-year-old Preston feeding a baby calf)
We start taking good care of our cows when they are born. The calves are given Colostrum which gives them natural antibodies and nutrients for a great start. We also vaccinate our calves when they are born to prevent illness and disease. They are housed in a warm, dry barn with soft, clean straw bedding.
Our milk cows are housed in a free stall barn. Here they are protected from the cold Nebraska winters (and this year’s cold Nebraska Spring). There are curtains on the barns that we put down in the winter to keep all of the heat in the barn. In the summer we roll up the curtains to allow the breeze to flow through the barn. We also have huge fans and even a sprinkler system to help keep the cows cool. We use sand for bedding in the free stall barns. The sand is maintained daily, keeping it dry and fresh. It is their own beach.
Did you know a cow drinks about 30 gallons of water a day? We clean our water tanks often to make sure our cows always have cool, clean water available. They are fed twice a day to make sure there is always feed for them to eat.
We also offer a few luxury items here at Classic Spa…I mean Classic Dairy. This picture shows a cow taking advantage of the massage brush. It is motion activated so every time a cow touches it, it starts spinning and massaging. The brush rotates, so that the cow can pretty much scratch all of her body. We also have a foot bath that the cows walk through. It is like a pedicure for cows.
As you can see, dairy farmers take very good care of our cows. By having healthy cows, we can ensure making a healthy product for consumers. We care about our cows; therefore we care for our cows.
- Brooke Engelman, Diller, Neb.