How Much Does a Cow Weigh?

How Much Does a Cow Weigh

How much does a cow weigh? Sometimes it isn’t easy to believe that there is quite a variation in cow weights. For example, a beef cow can weigh anywhere from 500 to 1,000 pounds, while a dairy cow typically weighs around 700-900 pounds. Of course, many factors contribute to cow weight, such as breed and diet. This article will take a deep look at the average cow weight for beef cows and dairy cows. We will also explore some of the reasons why there is such a variation in cow weights.

How Much Does a Cow Weigh? (Beef, Dairy, Calf )

When it comes to cow weights, there is a lot of variation. A beef cow can weigh anywhere from 500 to 1000 pounds, while a dairy cow typically weighs around 700-900 pounds. The discrepancy between beef and dairy cow weight is largely due to diet. Dairy cows are bred to produce more milk, so they are typically fed a diet that is higher in calories and protein.

The cow’s weight depends mostly on these factors:

  • Age
  • Breed
  • Location
  • Nutritional history
  • Individual traits

On the other hand, beef cows are bred to produce more muscle. But unfortunately, it means that they can get by with a lower-quality diet.

Many factors contribute to cow weight, such as breed and climate. For example, in colder climates, cows tend to weigh less than their counterparts in warmer temperatures because they need more body fat to stay warm.

How Much Does a Cow Weigh

In addition, cow weight is also determined by how much milk they produce and what cow it is (beef or dairy). Dairy cows typically weigh more than beef cows as a result of these factors:

They are bred for higher production rates.

As a result, they are typically fed a diet that is higher in calories and protein.

They need more body fat to stay warm in colder climates.

They are generally smaller in size than beef cows.

The average cow’s weight for beef cows ranges from 500 to 700 pounds, while the average cow’s weight for dairy cows ranges from 700 to 900 pounds.

How Much Does a Cow Weigh

How Much Does a Beef Cow Weigh?

The average cow weight for beef cows ranges from 500 to 700 pounds. Beef cow weights vary based on several factors, including but not limited to diet and climate. A cow’s weight will also depend on its age and how much milk it produces per day (if any). The typical cow weight for beef cows is between 500 and 700 pounds. Some factors can affect cow weight, such as diet and climate. For example, beef cow weights may be lower in colder climates because they need more body fat to stay warm.

The list below mentions the weight of cows by breed.

(female):

  • Angus – 1,210 pounds (550 kg)
  • Hereford – 1,200 pounds (544 kg)
  • Limousin – 1,650 pounds (750 kg)
  • Brahman – 1,320 pounds (600 kg)
  • Simmental – 1,300 pounds (590 kg)
  • Shorthorn – 1,760 pounds (800 kg)

Males (bulls) are naturally hulking.

How Much Does a Male Cow Weigh?

The list below mentions the weight of bulls by breed.

  • Angus – 1,870 pounds (850 kg)
  • Hereford – 1,800 pounds (816 kg)
  • Limousin – 2,530 pounds (1,150 kg)
  • Brahman – 2,100 pounds (950 kg)
  • Simmental – 2,500 pounds (1,134 kg)
  • Shorthorn – 2,100 pounds (950 kg)

How Much Does a Dairy Cow Weigh?

A cow’s weight will also depend on its age and how much milk it produces per day. For example, a cow that is only two years old may weigh about 500 to 600 pounds, while one that is five years old might weigh 750 to 800 pounds.

The average cow weight for dairy cows is between 700 and 900 pounds. In addition, some factors can affect cow weight, such as diet and climate. For example, cow weights may be lower in colder climates because they need more body fat to stay warm or higher if they are fed a diet high in protein and calories.

How Much Does a Cow Weigh?

Here is a list of the average cow weight by breed (female):

Holstein–1250 pounds (570 kg)

Jersey – 800 lbs (360 kg)

Brown Swiss – 1100 pounds (500 kg)

Guernsey – 900 pounds (410kg)

An Ayrshire cow weighs 850 pounds (390 kg).

Dairy Shorthorn – 1,450 pounds (658 kg)

The average cow weight for dairy cows ranges from 700 to 900 pounds.

Dairy cow weight is largely determined by diet; beef cows are bred to produce more muscle so that they can get by with a lower-quality diet. On the other hand, dairy cows are bred to produce more milk, so they are given a diet that is higher in calories and protein. Dairy cow weights also vary based on the climate. In colder climates, they need more body fat to stay warm.

How Much Does a Calf Weigh??

A calf is the young local cow, and its mass rapidly grows from a few pounds to over 200 pounds within its first year of life. When weighing calves, keep in mind that cow weight can vary from breed to breed, and cow size will also influence how much they consider at different ages. The calf at birth will weigh about 82 pounds (37 kg) and will be about 12 inches long and up to eight inches at its shoulder. A calf’s average weight gain is around two pounds a day for the first six months of life.
A commercial steer (bull calf) is expected to put on about one pound per day, while a cow (female calf) will put on around half that amount.

How Much Does a Cow Weigh When Butchered

A cow weighs about 1200 pounds when it is butchered. For commercial productions, cows usually weigh 900 to 1,350 pounds at slaughter. The average cattle weight at slaughter will depend on customer demands, which determine the age range and weight of cattle.

However, cattle have variations in body size, and customer demands are always different. Some want meat from younger cows, and others like the meat from older cows. So, the weight of cattle when slaughtered varies.
The cow is typically hung on a rail and then bled out by severing the neck’s carotid artery and jugular vein. However, the heart is still beating and causes blood to flow from the body cavity. After this, the cow is skinned and de-headed. Finally, the hide will be removed from the cow’s body in one piece or cut into smaller pieces for processing.

Then the cow’s legs are detached at the hip joints using a power saw or other cutting tools such as axes. These cuts must be clean and precise not to contaminate the meat. The cow’s stomach or intestines are removed at this point, and any remaining blood is cleaned from the carcass. Finally, the cow is cut into smaller sections for packaging and sale.

How Much Meat Do You Get From a Cow?

the expected yield for retail cuts from beef carcasses ranges from 55% to 75%, depending on the fatness, muscling, and age of the cow. The average cow yields about 450 pounds (204 kg) of retail cuts, including steaks, roasts, ground beef, and offal.

The US beef industry is focused mostly on producing leaner beef, as consumers prefer leaner meats to fattier ones. This has led to a decrease in cow weight at slaughter and an increase in the percentage of beef that is trimmed from each cow before it’s sold for consumption.

How Many Steaks in a Cow?

A cow yields about 450 pounds (204 kg) of retail cuts, including steaks, roasts, ground beef, and offal. This means that a cow will yield about 22-25 steaks. The size of the steak will vary depending on how thick it is cut, but an average size would be around six to eight ounces. Once again, for those unfamiliar, steaks generally come from steer (male cows) while the meat from female cows is generally ground up and considered lower grade.

A cow also has a variety of other cuts that can be used, such as ribs, brisket, and skirt steak. These cuts are not as popular as the ones mentioned earlier, but they can still provide a good meal for those who enjoy them.

Let’s take a look at two examples and the amount of meat you can get.

Example 1)

If we use the example above for a 1,200 pounds steer, from a cow and cut the carcass into primarily boneless steaks and roasts, we would get (on average):

  • 90 pounds of boneless chuck roasts and steaks (10-12% of carcass weight)
  • 85 pounds of round roasts and steaks (10-12% of carcass weight)
  • 80 pounds of rib and loin steaks (10-12% of carcass weight)
  • 50 pounds of other cuts (brisket, flank, short ribs, skirt steak)
  • and 185 pounds of lean trim, or ground beef (20-25% of carcass weight)

For individual types of steak, you would get:

  • 18 pounds of strip loin steaks (2.5%),
  • 9 pounds of tenderloin steaks or filets (2.5%),
  • in general, less than 3% per individual type of steak

Example 2)

Another example of 1,000 lb. same results.

Their average hanging weight, also called “on the rail” is 61%, for a 1,000 pounds steer, which is 610 lbs of beef. Further weight loss for meat accounts for 18%, which leaves you with 430 pounds of meat that would go into retail cuts (steaks, roasts, ground beef, etc.)

Here are the number of retail cuts you would get:

  • Round (round steak, rump roast, sirloin tip steak, etc.) – 103.2 lbs
  • Sirloin (sirloin steak, stew, and ground beef) – 38.7 lbs
  • short loin (porterhouse steak, T-bone steak) – 34.4 lbs
  • flank (flank steak, short ribs) – 17.2 lbs
  • rib (rib-eye steak, rib steaks, back ribs) – 38.7 lbs
  • short plate (skirt steak, short ribs) – 30.1 lbs
  • chuck (chuck roast or steak, arm roast) – 107.5 lbs
  • brisket – 25.8 lbs
  • shank – 17.2 lbs
  • suet & hanging tender – 17.2 lbs

These are just the averages, and the actual live weight to retail cuts yield varies, depending on breed, fat to muscle ratio, age, cutting order, etc.

Largest Cows in the World

The heaviest breed of cow is the Holstein cow. The cow’s weight is approximately around 1800 lbs. The record for the heaviest cow was a cow named Big Bertha in Wisconsin that weighed about 1900 pounds. The largest cow ever recorded came from England and weighed almost 3000 pounds at its peak weight. This cow, by the way, was not a Holstein breed but a cow from the Chianina breed.

Smallest Cows in the World

The smallest cow in the world is the Jersey cow. These cows weigh about 450 pounds on average and stand about 42 inches at the shoulder. The record for the smallest cow ever was a cow from Switzerland that weighed only 265 pounds.

Beef Cows vs Dairy Cows

When it comes to beef cows, they generally weigh more than dairy cows. A beef cow is a cow that is used for meat production. These cows weigh anywhere from 1000-1400 pounds on average and are usually around 54 inches at the shoulder.

Dairy cows, on the other hand, are used for milk production. Dairy cows weigh about 600-800 pounds on average and are about 44 inches tall. Holstein cow is the most common dairy cow breed in America today.

What are Heifers and Steers?

A cow that has not given birth yet is known as a heifer cow. A steer cow, on the other hand, refers to a male cow that has been castrated at an early age for meat production purposes. The average weight for a beef cow is about 1000-1400 pounds.

So, now you know how much a cow weighs! As you can see, there is quite a bit of variation between breeds and even within the same breed. If you’re ever curious about the weight of a specific cow, just ask your local farmer! They’ll be more than happy to tell you.

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