Milk feeding young calves


Milk feeding is essential for the calf to grow. At birth, the young calf’s rumen is inactive. Only milk can be digested to enable correct growth of the animal during the first few days of life. Milk is digested in the abomasum.

Gradually, the rumen becomes active. This will be the main digestive organ following weaning.

Worth knowing

Safe preparation of the milk replacer is the foundation for handling digestive disorders often observed in young calves: most dietary diarrhoea is due to poor feed preparation.

The main errors encountered are

  • Mixing temperature too low
  • Inappropriate concentration
  • Drinking temperature too low
  • Inappropriate quantities provided


Follow the feed plan Under-feeding will limit growth, overfeeding will lead to the animals swelling due to the reflux of excess milk in the rumen.

Observe mixing (50 °C) and dispensing (42 °C) temperatures.

In case of doubt, our technicians are available to advise you.