For the first several weeks, they will need an escape-proof pen/pasture. It takes several weeks for them to settle in and learn they are at their new home. If they escape too soon, they may be lost forever. After they know where home is they will usually not go to far away if they escape.
Be prepared with minerals for cattle. At minimum, they need a mineral block with selenium and iodine and other trace minerals Selenium may not be needed in some parts of the country.
They need some good quality hay to eat. It should be very green. Orchard Grass and Timothy are good choices, perhaps with alfalfa mixed in.
Dexters don't necessarily need shelter, but they do need shade in the heat of summer, and a wind block in the coldest winds of winter. Access to trees can provide most of their shelter needs if you don't have a structure.
Picking Up Your New Dexter Cattle
A trailer of sorts is best for transport. Sides need to be at least 48" high.
Contact us as you are preparing to leave home to give us an estimated arrival time and keep us updated if something changes Kirk, 503-826-0132 text preferred
Arriving Home with your new Dexters.
Be very careful in transferring your new Dexters from your vehicle to their escape-proof pen.
If they escape, try not to chase them, instead gently call “Come Cow” and use a little hay to bribe them into going where you want them to go.
Make certain they have plenty of grazing/hay minerals and water. Keep food in front of them at all times for the first month.
When you approach your new cows with food, move calmly and gently and call “come cows”. This will train them to come for food, and you can also use this call to retrieve them if they should ever wander away.
Be careful feeding anything other than grazing and hay and minerals. Grain- based foods must be fed very sparingly or it can make them very sick. A couple of slices of bread can be used as a training treat.
After the first several weeks
After your cattle are settled in, they will know where they live and you won't need to worry so much about them escaping and wandering away.
Now that they are settled in, you can start to moderate their food a bit. In winter, they should have all the hay they can eat at least 3 times per day, but it's preferable to always have access to hay.
Watch the condition of the cattle, if they have bones showing too much, then your pasture or hay may be lacking and the cattle may need to have better forage or access to a supplement tub.