Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of barn do your “girls” live in?
How Many “Girls” Do You Have?
The dairy operates at two locations with 575 mature girls, with an additional 600 adolescent girls. They are grouped by age, height, weight and stage of gestation.
Do You Have Babies There? And … Do You Take Special Care Of Them?
The dairy’s nursery can contain 40-70 newborns. Newborns are all cared for individually and reside in one-occupant calf mini-hotels.
Is there some kind of “registration” the “Girls” have to satisfy?
All of our girls are both maternally & paternally identified. These records are maintained by the United States Holstein Association under the “Clair-A-Den” prefix.
How Do You Keep “The Girls” Comfortable?
Our girls are housed in a variety of different facilities. Special needs animals are provided with access to dry lots or pastures. The Mature girls have ample access to comfortable beds containing mattresses.These beds are regularly maintained 4 times per day, using both sawdust and sand to absorb moisture and to ward off bacterial growth.
During the warmer months our girls are kept cool using a multitude of ventilation fans arranged in a pattern that generates 4MPH winds throughout the entire facility.
How Are The Newborns Taken Care Of?
A large maternity pen is utilized for the birth and delivery process. This area is cleaned and re-bedded after each delivery. This area is designed to be a peaceful, quiet and comfortable environment, and is in close proximity to the entire management team should a girl require assistance.
Once a calf is born a carefully designed and detailed protocol is followed. This protocol is designed to provide all the necessary nourishment that the youngest and most vulnerable girls require. This process also initiates a detailed immunization program designed to stimulate their own immune systems response. The process continues at regular intervals throughout her life. The protocol is very similar to immunization schedule for a child.
Are You Organic?
It is important to note that dairy cows are not routinely treated with antibiotics. If a cow develops an illness, a conventional dairy farmer will remove her from the milking herd, and treat her with FDA approved antibotics under the supervision of a veterianry. She will not rejoin the milking herd until her milk is antibiotic free. Samples of her milk will be tested to ensure that all of the antibiotics are completely out of her system.
Every tank load of milk entering dairy processing plants is strictly tested for drug residues. Any tanker that tests positive for any drugs including antibiotics is disposed of immediately, never reaching the public.
Do “The Girls” Have Names?
Our children will often name our girls. As a general practice the girls are also given a two or three digit number at birth. Since our girls roam freely throughout the barn the numbers are the easiest, quickest and most reliable method of identification.
Are You A “Dairy Of Distinction”?
Yes, the dairy has received a “Dairy of Distinction” designation.
How Much Milk Does Your Dairy Produce Per Year?
13,000,000 to 14,000,000 pounds of milk annually! The milk produced by the girls on our farm is enough to provide 20,000 people with their recommended daily allowance of dairy products. This statistic is our motivational tool for maintaining the highest quality product we produce.