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Epic Farm Battle: Goats vs. Cows

Updated: Feb 27, 2023



Is there really a comparison between goats and cows? They're both pretty awesome. I might just be really love agriculture but I'm always up for discussing the pros and cons of goats vs. cows. If you're considering adding one or both of these to your farm here are a few things to weigh.


Goats Pros & Cons

People love goats. They're friendly, humorous and fun to be around. Just don't let them get bored.


Pros:

  • Easy to manage and train (depending on the goat)

  • Don't need that much space, so they are a great choice for small hold farms

  • Meat, cheese (chèvre!), hide, wool (depending on the species)

  • Smaller and easier to transport

  • Handling is relatively safe and easy

  • Minimal upfront costs and investments

  • Adaptable to various climates and environments

  • They eat weeds (you can even rent them out for natural weed control)

Cons:

  • With any milk animal you have to keep breeding them

  • Less milk than cows and hardly any cream

  • Goat milk and meat are not widely popular (in the US)

  • You may need to purchase electric fencing...and keep a close eye on it, goats are notorious escape artists.


Cows Pros & Cons

There are many reasons many people love owning cows. Some of the reasons are; saving money, exercise, health, and self sufficiency. Also, some types of cows are more friendly and easier to keep than others. But having a cow isn't right for everyone so here are some things to look at when thinking about a cow.


Pros:

  • All the milk you can handle-and extra for friends, neighbors or other animals.

  • Meat, cheese, cream, butter, yogurt, hide

  • More manure - depending on how you look at this it could be a con as well

  • They aren't picky about what they eat

  • Cow milks and beef are common and popular (in the US) and can provide reliable revenue stream


Cons:

  • Need more space about 2-3 acres per cow.

  • They eat more you may have to supplement hay

  • Hard to transport

  • Depending on where you live finding a bull might be challenging. Using artificial insemination might be a way around this but that requires training and equipment.

  • A larger animal and can be harder to manage

  • Upfront costs can make it difficult to get started

  • You'll need a milking stand & the right cow personality/training to be milked


Well, which one do you think wins? I believe it all comes down to personal preference. I just want a few of both!


What are your thoughts? Which is your favorite? We'd love to hear from you.


Want to learn more? Check out these great resources:


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