Creative Cow Care: From Beethoven to Backscratchers

No matter our daily obligations, most of us appreciate the aspects of our life that keep us comfortable and productive – like listening to our favorite music playlist or relaxing after a long day on a cushiony couch. You can actually compare these comforts to life on the farm for dairy cows. Cows are the center of a dairy, so farmers work hard to ensure their “girls” are as content as possible. After all, dairy cows do have the important job of turning plants humans can’t eat into nutritious dairy products!

Dairy farmers make sure their cows always have access to nutritious food, clean water, comfortable bedding and routine veterinary care – all while protecting the environment and investing in local communities. But most farmers are going above and beyond the status quo with these creative animal care practices.

The Power of Moo-sic

Just like with humans, research has found that classical music (especially compositions from the likes of Beethoven and Mozart) can boost the mood of dairy cows and in turn help them make more milk. Some farmers have even installed music systems in their barns to play a soothing playlist for their cows to jam out to!

Click here to watch a dairy farmer hold a concert for his cows in the middle of a pasture.

Cow Brushes

Cows don’t have the luxury of being able to scratch an itch very easily, so dairy farmers invented cow brushes to do the job for them! Placed throughout the barn, these brushes give dairy cows the freedom to walk up and be pampered whenever they aren’t milking (which is only 2-3 times a day). These brushes also keep the cows clean and increase blood circulation. Farmers often see a line formed around the brushes because cows enjoy them so much!

Protection from Mother Nature

Because dairy farmers are sometimes faced with less-than-ideal weather, they stay prepared to protect their herd from the elements. Farmers provide access to water 24 hours a day, and most farms in warmer parts of the country have sprinklers in their barns to keep their cows cool.

And just like the differences between your home and the home of someone who lives in a colder and/or warmer region, dairy farms are designed differently for various climates. One example is the freestall dairy barn, which provides both ventilation during summer months and shelter during winter.

At the end of the day, dairy farmers depend on their cows just as much as the cows depend on them – so they do whatever it takes (and more) to make sure they are properly cared for. Check out 10 other ways dairy cows have it made!

By Jordan Manning

Jordan grew up in the cattle industry and uses her love of agriculture every day to help people understand more about their food. She previously worked at the Texas Beef Council. When she's not working, Jordan enjoys cheering for the Aggies. Learn more about Jordan

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