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Cow Gestation Calculator

Created by Łucja Zaborowska, MD, PhD candidate
Reviewed by Bogna Szyk and Jack Bowater
Last updated: Jan 18, 2024

Our cow gestation calculator is a simple instrument that can be used to find the start of the calving period and the end of the postpartum interval for both first-time and multiple-times calvers. If you want to figure out the feed conversion ratio of your herd, check out the feed conversion ratio calculator.

Read on to find out more about the cow gestation and postpartum details, and discover differences in calving based on breed of cow 🐄

How to use the cow gestation calculator?

Our cattle gestation calculator requires just two effortless steps:

  1. Input the day your cows were or will be exposed to the bull:

    • This assesses the possible fertilization day.

    • If your cows were or will be artificially inseminated, enter the exact date of insemination.

  2. Choose if your cows are first-calvers or multiple calvers:

    • A first-calver describes a cow in her very first pregnancy.

Your result will include the calving start date and the end of the postpartum interval period.

Would you like to know how many days are left till your cows' due date? Try our date to date calculator.

How to calculate cow gestation using dates?

Let's follow the cow gestation table - the average cattle gestation for most breeds is 283 days, although it may last anywhere from 279 to 287 days.

💡 The calving of older and larger cows usually happens 10 days later. Smaller and younger cattles' pregnancy may last 10 days less.

The calf gestation calculator uses the following formula:

Calving start = Day when exposed to bull + 283 days

Our calving calculator is based on the fact that regular post-partum interval period lasts 50-60 days:

End of interval period = Calving + 55 days

It also takes into account that cows that are pregnant with their first calf usually have longer postpartum intervals:

End of interval period = Calving + 65 days

Try our other useful animal tools:

Details and definitions in the cattle gestation chart

Bovine gestation calculators and articles use a few cattle-breeding specific words that may be difficult to understand. Let us explain all the necessary definitions 🐮

  • Open cow - a cow that is not yet pregnant. A young cow that is not pregnant after being exposed to the bull usually lacks minerals and nutritions. Open cows should also be checked for infections and if their vaccinations are up to date. Older cows that cannot get pregnant might be too old to conceive.

  • Calving - is the period when cows give birth to calves. A cow's pregnancy depends on multiple factors: the nutrition available, diet, body condition, age, and any difficulties or complications suffered during this calving or previous calvings. The bull's ability to impregnate should also be assessed. Our cow due date calculator estimates the start of this period.

💡 A cow's gestation will lasts longer if the calf is a male.

  • Postpartum interval period - the time after calving during which the cow cannot get pregnant. The postpartum interval is longer for younger cows that gave birth for the first time. The average duration of this period is equal to 50-60 days. Calving complications also prolong the postpartum period. This beef gestation calculator computes the average ending date of this interval.

  • Pine needles - pine needles can cause abortions among cattle. There's a need to separate cows in late pregnancy from every part of a pine tree.

You can learn more about the cow gestation calendar from the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources.


How do I calculate the calving date for my cow?

To calculate the calving date for your cow, you can follow these steps:

  1. Take the date when your cow was exposed to a bull.
  2. Add 283 days.
  3. That's all! You have now determined the calving date for your cow.

How do I calculate the end of a cow's postpartum interval?

To calculate the end of postpartum interval for a cow, you can follow these steps:

  1. Take the calving date.
  2. Add 65 days if this is your cow's first pregnancy, or alternatively 55 days if your cow has had calves before.
  3. That's all! You have now calculated the end of the postpartum interval for a cow after the calving period.

When will a cow give birth if the mating date is March 3rd?

If your cow were exposed to bulls on March 3rd, the estimated calving date would be around December 11th. A cow is expected to start calving approximately 283 days after mating. To determine the end of the postpartum period, visit the Omni cow gestation calculator.

What factors affect cow gestation and calving?

Several factors can affect cow gestation and calving, including the quality of available nutrition, the composition of the diet, the cow's physical condition, their age, complications encountered during current or past calvings, and the bull's reproductive capacity, which should also be evaluated.

Łucja Zaborowska, MD, PhD candidate
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