This page is dedicated to providing information regarding the care and feeding of Miniature Zebu Cattle.  The information is provided by members and is based on their experiences with the breed.  Remember that what works in one situation may not work in another.  The International Miniature Zebu Association and its officers and Members take no responsibility for any reliance on information provided by authors on this page.  If you have an idea or system that works for you, share it with the readers of this site.  You may contact the Secretary/Treasurer of the IMZA to have your information posted here or email the webmaster.
A new Zebu is born on Rick Bogle's farm in Florida
A new Zebu is born on Steve Herndon's farm in Kentucky
Jazzy with her new baby bull calf.
Results of the Florida Miniature Zebu Association Zebu Steer Project
The Florida Miniature Zebu Association (FMZA) recently conducted a nutritional Zebu steer project.  The steers, donated by the JW Fewox family of Frostproof, FL, were approximately 4 years old.  These animals had been strictly grass fed until Aug 25, 2007, when they were moved to Ann Harper's farm in Lady Lake, FL.  There for seven (7) weeks they were fed grass and grain, and on Oct 18 they were taken to be slaughtered.  The hanging weights were 258 and 192 pounds.  Test samples of the Zebu meat were taken to ABC Research Corporation in Gainesville, FL for Nutritional testing.

Here are the results of those test compared to select and choice beef:

ZebuSelect BeefChoice Beef
Calories/100g    165.19201.00 219.00
Fat      9.27% 8.09%10.15%
Iron    mg/100g       2.72     2.99      2.99
Cholesterol     mg/100g     57.3     86.00   86.00
A new Zebu is born at Lorin Lippert's Ranch in South Dakota
A new Zebu is born on Ann & Larry Harper's farm in Florida
Rosebud with her first calf. Larry Harper had to assist the birth by pulling the calf.
Photos of the proper way to measure your Miniature Zebu
Larry and Judy Rohner's 32" tall Red Heifer at 26 months old.
Rick Bogle's 30 1/2" tall Bull at 28 months old.
Larry and Judy Rohner's 27 3/4" tall Bull at 19 months old.
Steve DeMoor's 26" tall Cow at 36 months old.

17500 Hamilton Arms Court, Dewitt, VA   23840   PHONE: (407) 717-0084
Zebu Husbandry
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17500 Hamilton Arms Court, Dewitt, VA   23840   PHONE: (407) 717-0084
#1. The calf needs to receive the cow's first milk (colostrum) or a powdered colostrum replacer as quickly as possible after birth.  A powdered colostrum should be available at your local farm store, such as Tractor Supply.  Use the colostrum replacer for 3 days, preferably about 4 times a day.

#2. Use a small nipple such as the goat nipples from your farm supply store. Days 1-3, feed about 12 to 16 ounces of colostrum, 4 times per day.  The first day, the calf may not drink this much, but after day 2, the goal should be to feed about 48 to 64 ounces per day.

#3. On Day 4, start feeding the calf a good quality milk replacer.  Depending on the size of the calf, the quantity should be 64 to 96 ounces per day, spread out into as many equal feedings as your schedule will allow.  Two feedings of 32 to 48 oz are sufficient, but the calf will do better if you can feed it 3 or 4 equal feedings.

#4. Offer feed such as rolled calf feed, calf starter, calf manna, etc. after about 10 days of age.  Some calves will eat feed early and some won't touch it until they are 60 days old.  If other calves are eating feed, it will learn from them and start eating feed sooner.

#5. Nutritional Supplements are available from your farm supply store if you feel they are needed.  1 cc of vitamin A/D and 1 cc of vitamin B-12 may be helpful.

Some tips about bottle feeding your Zebu newborn.
The correct way to measure a miniature zebu is at the withers, directly behind the hump.  Miniature Zebus should not exceed a height of 42 inches at three years of age.
Last Updated:  03/12/15
Click here  for a handy
Gestation Calculator to determine when your miniature zebu calf is due.  Some of our long-time members have found that most miniature zebu cows carry their calves for around 290 days.  This calculator is actually for horses, but it will allow you to plug in the number of days.
How Do I Know When MY Cow is Ready to Give Birth?
When it comes time to prepare for a new calf, do you know the signs of impending birth?  Being a fairly new owner of zebus, I relied on long-time breeders and friends to give me tips on what to look for when a cow is ready to give birth.  If you don’t know the cow’s due date (I pasture-breed and never see my bull doing his job!), it can be a guessing game.  Every cow shapes up differently, but some signs can give you an idea of when she is ready to calf.
By Barbara McDermott
Udder at two months before calving.
Udder at one month before calving.
Although it depends on the age of the cow and how many calves she has had, most cows will start to develop an udder about two months prior to calving.  You will notice the udder slowly filling…and then it may stall and no progress seems to be made after a month or so.
Udder at one month before calving.
Udder at two weeks before calving.
About two weeks prior, the udder will really start to fill up and will progressively get larger as the due date nears.
Udder/vulva at one week before calving.
Udder at one week before calving.
A few days prior, the teats will extend and appear to be pointing straight down.  The udder will be swollen in front, as well as in back; but, it usually will not get that “poofy,” as I call it, until a day or two before calving.  The vulva will also get very flabby and protrude, and you may see a discharge from your cow’s vulva.  The tail will also get very loose, and the top of the rump will seem to fall away.
Udder/vulva at two days before calving.
Udder at two days before calving.
Photos above two hours prior to calving.  Note how "poofy" the udder is out the back and how flabby the vulva is.
A very sure sign that your cow is ready to calf NOW is when the water breaks….get ready!  Most cows deliver healthy calves on their own—in my case, I’ve only seen one born—most of my cows have their calves very early in the morning.  FYI. This beautiful cow had a healthy little bull on July 3, 2015.