How much does a cow weigh and how to calculate its weight

Calculation of live weight of cattle allows you to plan the pregnancy of cows, to ensure the right diet and increase productivity. You can define it in different ways. The ability to calculate mass without weighing will help you choose a highly productive individual when buying.

Average weight

Average weight indicators of cows vary between 300–450 kg, bulls - 600–850. Newborn calves weigh an average of 30–40 kg.

There are 4 weight categories of cattle:

  1. Selective (class A) - from 500 kg.
  2. First-class (class B) - 400-500 kg.
  3. Second-class (class C) - 350-450 kg.
  4. Third grade (class D) - up to 300 kg.

After slaughter, all cow carcasses are distributed and sorted for further processing, denoting them with signs corresponding to weight categories. If the carcass does not fit in any of the criteria, it is branded with a triangle.

The mass of cattle depends on many factors:

  • genetic data determined by the breed;
  • health conditions;
  • diet
  • age
  • gender;
  • conditions of detention;
  • breed purpose;
  • climatic features of the region.


Fatness of a cow depends on age. A one-year-old chick weighs from 200 kg.

Important! At the age of one year, a heifer enters sexual hunting, but a bull can be allowed to reach it only when it reaches a weight corresponding to 70% of the weight of an adult. Fertilization of a heifer before this is fraught with the birth of inferior offspring and the death of a woman in childbirth. The body of the female is completely ready for gestation at 3 years old.

At 3 years, the normal weight of the female starts at 300 kg. An adult five-year-old cow weighs 400-500 kg. In cows, the indicator varies depending on the stage of lactation.


The average weight of a monthly goby is 40.8–51.8 kg. Over a year, a male gains 300–400 kg. Intensive fattening heifers are not castrated for up to a year in order to increase muscle gain. Bulls are sent to the slaughter at the age of 20 months, when the animals form a full-fledged muscle frame.

The weight of a breeding bull can reach 900 kg. Keep it separate from the cows. During mating, body weight is reduced by 50 kg.


Depending on gender and breed, the weight of a newborn calf varies between 30–50 kg. Babies are kept on milk suction for 6–8 months, and from 3 months. juicy feed is introduced. During the day, animals gain 0.5-1.8 kg; this process is affected by nutrition.

By 6 months the heifer gains weight 100–180 kg, the goby - 200–210 kg. After weaning from the mother, babies gain weight more slowly. By 10 months the calf weighs 200-350 kg.

The difference in weight depending on the destination

Breeds of cows are divided according to purpose into:

  • meat;
  • dairy;
  • meat and dairy.

They vary in body constitution, mass and performance.

Did you know? The weight of cattle is constantly fluctuating. Daily fluctuations vary between 30–40 kg.


The smallest representatives of cattle are dairy cows. Their weight data vary within 300 kg in females, 600 in bulls. They are distinguished by a neat physique and small dimensions. Babies are born with a weight of 20-30 kg.

Dairy heifers reach puberty faster. You can reduce them already at 2 years of age.


Large-sized meat animals at the age of one year reach 500 kg. Babies are born with a weight of 40-50 kg. Quickly fatten on milk fattening.

Meat breeds of cattle include such as Charolais, Aberdeen-Angus, Galloway, Kazakh white-headed, Belgian blue.

The heifers reach puberty at 3 years. Animals are characterized by high meat productivity. The meat is fatty, juicy, contains a maximum of animal protein.

Meat and dairy

These are universal animals of the combined direction. Male offspring are allowed for meat, and high-quality dairy products are obtained from cows. The weight of the female reaches 580–600 kg, the male - 850 and above.

Calves are born with a weight of 30 kg. Depending on the breed, one of the qualities can be expressed more strongly. They grow faster and reach puberty earlier than meat representatives.

How to determine the weight of cattle

When buying livestock or sending it for slaughter, you need to know the exact weight of the animal. This indicator tells a lot about cattle health. For example, if you buy a one-year-old dairy-and-meat burenka and its weight is below 400 kg, it means that the animal is weakened, sick or improperly kept.

Did you know? A cow releases 25 liters of saliva daily, and in a year an individual weighing 500 kg can produce 1 ton of manure.

You can find out the weight of a cow not only with scales. Going to the market for a cow, arm yourself with a new measuring tape. The results of calculations by measurements give an error of 20-30 kg.

Chest and abdomen

Position the measuring tape on the back behind the shoulder blade and draw a circular line along the rib cage behind the forelimbs. Tighten the tape tight enough to squeeze bulging hairs. The second measurement is the girth of the abdominal cavity.

The tape is carried out exactly along the most voluminous part of the body. Then we consider the weight according to the formula: (A + B): 2 + 50, where A is the measurement of the chest, B is the measurement of the abdomen.

For example, A = 130, B = 125, we get:

(130 + 125): 2 + 50 = 177.5.

According to the regression equation

The miscalculations are carried out according to three formulas:

  • 5.3 x A - 507, where A is the chest circumference of 170-180 cm;
  • 5.3 x A - 486 - for a girth of 180-190 cm;
  • 5.3 x A - 465 - for girth over 191 cm.

Measurement of the chest is carried out similarly to the method described above.

According to the Kluver-Strauch method

The Kluver-Strauch technique is considered the most accurate. For calculation, a measurement of the chest and an oblique body length will be required. Oblique length is determined by laying a measuring tape from the femoral tubercles to the loin portion of the sternum. The values ​​add and subtract 50. For example, body length 125, girth of the sternum 150, we get: 125 + 150 - 50 = 225.

According to the Trukhanovsky method

Calculations are carried out by measuring the sternum and oblique body length. The values ​​are multiplied and divided by 50. For example, the circumference of the sternum is 170, the oblique length of the body is 150, we get: (150 x 170): 50 = 510.

How to measure calf weight

To find out the calf’s weight, 2 measurements are required - sternum circumference and oblique body length. Before taking measurements, fix the animal and calm it. The baby's oblique body length is measured from the root of the tail to the beginning of the forelimb.

After that, the weight can be determined by any of the above methods.

How to find out meat

The indicator is measured as a percentage.

He is:

  • 40-50% for dairy representatives;
  • 80% for meat;
  • 70% for meat and dairy.

Important! To calculate the meat yield, the mass is calculated using weights, since all other methods give only approximate figures and are intended to compile a complete diet.

Slaughter yield increases with age. The amount of meat products is affected by diet, climatic conditions. It is also important to consider the purpose of the breed.

The average weight of different parts of meat and dairy cows with a slaughter weight of 700 kg, provided that the meat yield is 60% (420 kg):

  • head - 10 kg;
  • liver - 5 kg;
  • tongue - 2 kg;
  • heart - 3 kg;
  • kidneys - 2 kg;
  • front leg to the hocks - 2 kg;
  • hind leg - 3 kg;
  • skin - 17 kg;
  • stomach - 15 kg;
  • tail - 2 kg;
  • fat - 5 kg;
  • bones - 112 kg.

The remaining 102 kg falls on the blood and intestines; in a percentage ratio, blood occupies 8% of live weight. Also, when calculating the meat yield, it is worth considering that fresh meat weighs more.

Champions by weight

The largest representative of the last century was the bull Donetto from Switzerland. The animal at the age of 8 reached 1.85 cm at the withers with a mass of 1.78 tons. The huge bull was distinguished by its kind, non-conflict character.

In 2008, Field Marshal of the Charolais breed was considered the largest bull in England. At that time, its mass was 1.7 tons with an increase of 1.9 m.

A powerful representative of the Podolsk breed Repp, weighing 1.5 tons, lives in Ukraine, in the Cherkasy region. Repp is ranked among the most prolific insemination bulls. For a year, more than 50, 000 calves are obtained from him artificially.

Accurate determination of the mass of cattle helps to solve many problems - from the identification of diseases to the planning of insemination and diet. For this, various methods are used, involving the calculation of measurements. The accuracy of the indicators is 20-30 kg.

However, these methods are not suitable for determining meat yield from slaughter.

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