Waco Midway FFA
  Sign-In  Register

Cattle Feeders- Guidelines, Expectations,and Supplies

This handout is a general outline explaining my expectations, some guidelines for raising show cattle, and supplies you may need. I am here to provide as much help as you may need/want- I know some of you are veterans in the show ring and may need little, if any, support, while others are just beginning their cattle showing careers.I am more than happy to help with the selection of cattle, feeding and management programs, showmanship, and any other assistance you might need. When done correctly, cattle projects are very time intensive, but I believe they areextremely rewarding!  

Here are some of my expectations of you as a cattle feeder:

  • Abide by all barn rules listed in the Midway FFA Handbook if raising animals at the Ag Farm.
  • Cattle will be fed, watered, and cared for twice daily. This allows you to monitor your animal for any infection, lameness, or disease and address the problem as soon as possible- the sooner the better!
  • If any abnormality is noticed, such as lameness,fungus, disease, or other sickness, it will be reported immediately.
  • Exercise and work with your animal daily- you cannot expect to be successful in the show ring with uncooperative calf!

Supplies needed:

  • Rope halter
  • Show halter
  • Neck tie
  • Show stick
  • Rice root brush
  • Scotch comb
  • Wash brush or plastic “curry comb”
  • Shampoo
  • Feeder or feed pan
  • A supportive family! (This is an essential)

Cattle selection:

I believe it is essential to begin a project with a quality animal and then enhance its quality through a superior feeding and management program. Prices vary tremendously, but I will be more than happy to help you select a quality animal that fits into your budget.

Cattle are selected based on the following with emphasis on different traits for heifers/steers:

  • Muscle
  • Fat/Condition
  • Structural Correctness
  • Balance/Eye Appeal
  • Breed/Sex Characteristics

Feeding Program:

                Your feeding program will depend on several factors, such as the age, sex, frame size and condition of the calf. All cattle require balanced diets that include energy (carbohydrates), protein, fat, fiber, and vitamins and minerals, but the amount of each needed will vary depending on the calf’s stage of development.Most commercially produced feeds are well balanced, but may require additional supplements.

                Remember,there is no “magic” feed or feed additive! Most cattle feeders will develop their own feed plan with different brands and additives that work for them, but everyone will have their own opinion as to which “brand” is the “best”. I willnot personally push any specific brand, but will be happy to make recommendations for you.

                Finally,I believe it is important to be consistent with feeding in both time and type.Feed at the same times EVERY day, preferably 12 hours apart- animals like schedules and will show better gains and be more efficient when their feed schedule is consistent. Also, choose a brand of feed and stick with it- all brands have different ingredients with different flavors, which cattle notice and those changes may cause them to go off feed. Types of feed (such as starter, grower, finisher, etc.) will be changed throughout the process, but I recommend you stay with the same brand.

If you ever have questions,please don’t hesitate to call, text, or email me!


Beth Zuilhof





 Website designed by: Wieghat Graphics