A common misconception about beef cattle is that weight gain is all about how much they eat. This doesn’t look at the whole picture though. Beef is 75% water, making cattle hydration one of the most important parts of growth and weight gain. Keep reading to find out how water does more than just prevent dehydration. Visit our blogs for more insight into caring for the herd.
Grass may seem like the most important factor in cattle nutrition, but it’s only one of the pieces of the puzzle. Digestion of grass requires a hefty water intake. A cow’s appetite can fluctuate greatly depending on how much water is available to them. With more water, cattle will consume more feed.
Cattle have some pretty spot-on natural instincts, too. If the water given to them is low-quality, they’ll drink only enough to survive, not enough to help them bulk up.
Similarly, if your cattle feel like they don’t have enough access to water, they’ll spend time monopolizing the trough. This is time they won’t spend grazing and eating. Slow or delayed water trough refill times could also lead to cows competing for access. This in turn causes stress in the cattle, which lends itself to disease vulnerability. On top of that, it will change the tenderness and flavor of the beef. To schedule an agritour of our ranch and see some happy cows for yourself, visit our website.
The perfect cattle watering system not only has to be functional but also has to account for these additional factors. Ensuring the cattle have more than enough access to good, clean water can mean the difference between a profitable year and a year that’s a loss.
We hope you’ve learned a little about how important hydration is to a cattle diet and health. To purchase some well-hydrated grass-fed beef from our ranch, visit our website.