The cow gestation period, or length of pregnancy of a cow, is approximately 285 days, which is pretty similar to a nine month - or 260 day – human pregnancy.

 

A “heifer” is a young female cow that has not birthed a calf. Once a heifer has birthed a calf, it is referred to as a “cow”.

 

Cows give on average 9 gallons of milk per day, which is close to 80 pounds of milk.

 

Cows are milked every day, typically twice per day – morning and night.

 

Cows spend about 6 hours a day eating and about 8 hours a day chewing their cud.

 

Cows have 1 stomach with 4 chambers (rumen, reticulum, omasum and abomasum) to help them digest plant matter that would otherwise be indigestible.

 

When cows “chew their cud”, they are actually chewing small balls of food – “cud” – that have returned to the mouth from the first chamber of the stomach (rumen) to continue the digestion process by getting re-chewed. Each cud is chewed about 40 to 60 times for about one minute. Chewing cud is an indicator of a healthy and comfortable cow.

 

It takes about 50 to 70 hours for a cow to turn grass into milk.

 

Cows have four teats, each with one mammary gland in the cow’s udder. These four mammary glands turn nutrients from feed and grass into milk. Droplets of milk are drained through a duct – small opening in the udder – and are removed through the teats.

 

Despite popular belief – and cow tipping rumors – cows actually are not built to sleep standing up like horses. They sleep while lying down.

 

Cows may spend about half of their day lying down, but they actually only sleep for about 4 hours a day. When they do sleep, it isn’t for 4 hours straight, but actually for about 1 to 5 minute increments.

 

A cow drinks about 25 to 50 gallons of water per day, which is about equivalent to a bathtub full of water.

 

An average dairy cow weighs about 1200 pounds.

 

A cows normal body temperature is 101.5 degrees Fahrenheit.

 

When it comes to spotted cows, no two cows have the same exact spots, which is kind of like their own unique fingerprint.

 

Holstein cows are the most common dairy breed in the United States.

 

There are more than 800 different breeds of cattle in the world, some that adapted naturally to the local climate, and some that were bred by humans for specialized uses.

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