Frequently Asked Questions About Calf Care

As you share Update 1 about your adopted calf with your students, here are some answers to frequently asked questions about your calf and her life on the farm. These topics can help you make connections to how old your calf is now and what her life is like during the winter months.

How Do Calves Stay Warm in the Winter?

There’s nothing cuter than a calf in a jacket. When the temperature drops below 40 degrees, calves typically get to wear calf jackets. So, why do dairy farmers put jackets on their calves this time of year? Because calves are unable to properly regulate their own body temperature until they are about 1 month old. So the calf jackets help keep them warm and cozy during the winter months.

Why Do Farmers Move Calves to Group Housing?

Calves are creatures of habit, and any change in routine can be a stressful time for them. Moving from individual hutches to group housing potentially combines many stressors at once – new surroundings, feeding and watering changes, vaccinations, and socialization with other calves. Dairy farmers work hard to follow best practices to optimize immune function and minimize disease risks to better prepare calves for the transition to group housing.