Dairy Cattle


When is the best time to get the milk from a cow or all times the best?  Ian – Louis Riel School
Answer: Cows are milked on a daily basis usually twice a day, early in the morning and late in the afternoon.


Question: How long does it take to milk a cow? King George School Grade s1 & 2
Answer: To milk a cow by hand it can take 10 to 15 minutes. A milking machine can do the job in less than five minutes.

Question: Can cows produce bad milk? King George School Grade s1 & 2
Answer:  If a cow is sick it can produce milk that is unfit for human consumption.  The dairy farmer would separate that cow from the rest of the herd so that there would be no chance of contamination.   Milk undergoes an intensive inspection process to insure quality before it is sent to the consumer.



Question:  How does the cow turn grass into milk?  Talon - Stanley Jones School
Answer:  After the cow eats the grass it is passed through her four stomachs to complete the digestion process.  Cows can eat up to 70 kgs of grass and consume 70 litres of water per day.   For every litre of milk the cow makes, 400 litres of blood (a cows body contains 45 litres of blood) must pass by the cow's udder to deliver the nutrients and water that go into the milk.  It takes anywhere from 50 to 70 hours for the cow to turn grass into milk.

Question:  How do you make butter?  Liam - MidSun Junior High
Answer:  After the cream is separated from the fresh milk, the warm cream is shaken or mixed until the liquid turns to a soft solid.  Next drain the remaining liquid (buttermilk) and add cool water to help solidify the butter and then drain the water.   The butter is then placed onto a cool surface and any remaining liquids are pressed out,salt is then mixed in and you have butter.

Question: Is milk healthy?  Ryan - Midsun Junior High School
Answer:  Yes, milk is very healthy for you. It contains many of the everyday essentials our bodies need. Milk is a very good source of calcium, which we need for strong bones, Vitamin D and protein. 

Question:  Do you milk all of your cows?  If so, what time do you milk?  Olivia - Glamorgan School
Answer: We do not have dairy cows on the farm.   Dairy farmers generally milk their cows early in the morning and again in the afternoon. 

 Question:  How do we get cheese from the store? Ryan - MidSun Junior High School
Answer: Cheese is a dairy product and therefore starts out as milk. It can be made from cows or goat milk and there are hundreds of different flavours. The process begins with the coagulation of milk which is helped along by an enzyme called rennet which forms a protein called casein. Herbs spices and even wood smoke are used to flavour cheeses. 


Question: How do you take milk from a cow? Liam - MidSun Junior High School
Answer: Cows can be milked either by hand or by machines. The cows’ teats are first disinfected and then the milking machine is placed on each of the four teats. The milking machine gently removes the milk from the cow's udder.

Question: Do cows like being milked?  Cheyenne - Ralph McCall School
Answer: Cows do like being milked as they produce milk everyday and only have so much room to store it. 

Question: How much milk can a dairy cow produce per day? St. Mark’s Grade 3 Class
Answer:  An average dairy cow consumes 120 litres of water to produce 30 litres of milk per day.

Question:  How long does it take to milk one cow by hand?  Is it fun? Gabrielle – Glamorgan Elementary School and Ayah - Calgary Islamic School
Answer:  It can take an experienced milker fifteen to twenty minutes to milk a cow. There is a technique to milking cows as the cow has four teats and the milker has two hands and the cow must be milked out evenly. Milking cows by hand is a very hard job and requires a lot of strength in the hands, wrists and forearms.  In comparison, a milking machine can milk the same cow in approximately five minutes.

Question:  How do you bottle milk?  Kassem – Calgary Islamic School
Answer:  Milk is sent from the farm to the dairy where it is pasteurized and inspected and then put into the containers that you find at the grocery store. 

Question:  Why do cows give us milk?    Noor – Calgary Islamic School
Answer:  Milk is a staple in most diets, therefore dairy farmers raise cattle to provide us with milk. The average dairy cow can provide approximately 25 to 30 litres of milk per day.

Question:  How does the milk come out of the cow? Logan – Glamorgan Elementary School and Marra - Age 4
Answer:  The cow first needs to become pregnant in order for the milk making process to begin. When the cow eats grass, grain or hay it is then digested and the milk conversion process begins.  In the udder there are small organs called Alveoli which are lined with cells that secrete milk into the udder.  Once the milk is in the udder it is then delivered through the teats to a calf or milking machine.  The dairy farmer makes sure that the teats are cleaned before the cow is milked and before the milk is delivered it is tested to make sure it is safe for human consumption.


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