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New Society Publishers Spring 2021

Homestead Cows
The Complete Guide to Raising Healthy, Happy Cattle
By (author): Callene Rapp By (author): Eric Rapp
Callene Rapp , Eric Rapp


New Society Publishers - Gabriola Island



Product Form:


Form detail:

Trade, Adhesive bound
Paperback , Trade, Adhesive bound


General Trade
Jun 29, 2021
Print Run: 6000
$24.99 CAD


8.88in x 7.5 x 0.46 in | 0.92 lb

Page Count:

176 pages


B&W 20 maps, charts, photographs and graphics
100% recycled content
FSC certified – recycled C016245
New Society Publishers
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Agriculture / Animal Husbandry
Animal husbandry|Veterinary medicine: large animals|Sustainable agriculture|Self-sufficiency and ‘green’ lifestyle
  • Short Description

Homestead Cows is a comprehensive guide to raising cattle, from a single milk cow to a small farm herd. Offers detailed planning rooted in practical experience, covering breed selection, herd size, whole farm management with cattle, safe handling, finances, housing, health, reproduction, processing, and more.

Every farm needs a cow – open the gates!

Every farm needs a cow – open the gates!

With an approach built around investing for the long term, Homestead Cows prepares homesteaders and small farmers to open the farm gate to cattle, whether a single milk cow or a small beef herd.

Homestead Cows covers the A to Z of husbandry:

  • Cow history, biology, diet, and nutrition
  • Understanding what you want, what's involved, and creating a plan
  • Selecting breeds and determining herd size
  • Housing and facilities, transportation, and equipment
  • Financial management and the dollars and cents of cows
  • Breeding and reproduction
  • Cow health and happiness, including safety, handling, and good husbandry
  • Processing, products, and cooking.

Cattle are the most productive, versatile, and low-input sources of food and revenue on the farm and can help regenerate and build soil. The secret to success is excellent management, and Homestead Cows distills decades of hard-won, practical knowledge into an essential guide to successful small-scale cattle farming for every homesteader and farmer.

  • Differs from other cattle raising books as the focus is for the small homestead looking to raise one to a few cows to supplement their homestead, rather than to run a cattle business
  • Differs from other books in this genre as it covers both milk cows and beef cattle.
  • The authors have over 50 years combined experience working with animals.
  • Both are involved in the Livestock Conservancy.
  • Callene is the Senior Zookeeper, Children's Farms, Sedgwick County Zoo and writes for Grit Magazine.
  • Eric is a life-long farmer and the owner/operator of the Rare Hare Barn.
  • Both are regular speakers at Mother Earth News Fairs and Livestock Conservancy events.
  • Cows are one of the most versatile and productive animals on the farm.
  • This book provides beginners with all the information they need to start and run a sustainable cattle business.
  • Contains information on management issues, how to keep cows healthy and happy, how to invest in a long-term herd, cattle behaviour, and basic cattle husbandry

Audience: People interested in cattle but not familiar with raising them, people looking for animals for a small homestead, homesteaders, DIYers

Callene and Eric Rapp have owned and operated the award-winning Rare Hare Barn since 2005, the largest heritage-breed meat-rabbit enterprise in the United States. In addition to their conservation work with rabbits, they have a large herd of heritage-breed Pineywoods cattle, and work with the critically endangered Palmer-Dunn strain. Callene has also worked with a variety of cattle breeds at the Sedgwick County Zoo, and Eric has had experience with his family's own cow-calf operation. They have over 50 years of combined experience handling nearly every species of domestic livestock and are active members of the Livestock Conservancy. Callene is also a regular contributor to Grit Magazine. Authors of Raising Rabbits for Meat, they live and farm in Leon, Kansas.

"In Homestead Cows, Callene and Eric Rapp take us on an epic journey that covers everything bovine in a uniquely approachable and systematic way. The book covers everything from the history of cattle to the ins and outs of choosing a breed that's right for you and gives you the tools to manage your experiences in a way that's humane for the cattle, the homesteader, and the land. This book is a must-read for every homesteader and small holder with an interest in keeping cattle for virtually any purpose, and would help bring husbandry back to large-scale operators who view cattle as a mere commodity."
Hank Will, editor, Mother Earth News

"Homestead Cows is a gem of a book full of great advice for anyone thinking about keeping cattle. It's a must read for newbies!"
Jeanette Beranger, senior program manager, The Livestock Conservancy

"This book covers all the aspects of cattle raising for the beginning farmer who's trying to traverse the landscape of farming. Callene and Eric have drilled down into the howto, without being preachy, to build the knowledge you will need when you put your first animals in your first pasture and watch them thrive. The only thing it doesn't cover is the number of old and new curse words you'll learn and use when you hit your shins on the trailer ball. I'm going to order a bunch and it should be a paperback that will fit in your back pocket or that Carhartt jacket pocket."
Carrie Balkcom, executive director, American Grassfed Association

"Homestead Cows is an excellent book for anyone interested in raising their own cattle. This book is chock-full of fantastic information useful for experienced cattlemen and novice farmers alike. I would feel confident putting this book in someone's hand and knowing they have all the information they need to raise their own cattle. Callene and Eric did an excellent job writing a book that was easy and enjoyable to read!"
Emily Nyman, heritage livestock expert, photographer, living history reenactor

"Cattle have been domesticated for over 10,000 years and people have worked side by side with them, benefiting greatly from the relationship. Dual and triple purpose breeds had many uses including draft power, along with milk and meat. Since 2008, Eric and Callene Rapp have owned and raised Pineywoods cattle when they acquired a bull and seven cows to help conserve this triple purpose breed. They've now compiled all of their cattle raising knowledge into an easy to read book that is perfect for someone who is interested in raising some of their own. Homestead Cows is a comprehensive guide that is perfect for the beginner, but is still useful for the experienced cattleman."
Alicia Boor, Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Agent, Cottonwood District, K-State Research and Extension

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Also Available

Raising Rabbits for Meat Eric Rapp 9780865718890 $24.99 CAD Nov 13, 2018

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