native home of the Dexter is in the southern part of Ireland where they were bred by small land
holders and roamed about the shelter less mountainous districts in
an almost wild state of nature. The first recorded knowledge of Dexters in America is when more
than two hundred Dexters were imported to the US between 1905 and
1915. In recent years there has been a worldwide surge of interest in Dexter cattle. They thrive
in hot as well as cold climates and do well outdoors year round, needing
only a windbreak, shelter and fresh water. Fertility is high and calves are dropped
in the field without difficulty. They are dual purpose, being raised for both milk and meat. Dexters
are also the perfect old-fashioned family cow. Pound for pound, Dexters
cost less to get to the table, economically turning forage into rich milk and quality, lean meat.
the guidelines, the ideal three year old Dexter bull measures 38 to 44 inches at the shoulder
and weighs less than 1000 pounds. The ideal three year old Dexter cow measures between 36 to 42
inches at the shoulder, and weighs less than 750 pounds. There are two
varieties of Dexters, short legged and long legged. Milk and beef production and other characteristics
are generally the same for both types.
Dexters come in Black, Red or Dun. Dexters are horned
or polled, with some people preferring to dehorn them. A milking cow can produce more milk for its
weight than any other breed. The daily yield averages 1 to 3 gallons per
day with a butterfat content of 4 to 5 percent. Yields of cream up to one quart per gallon are possible.
The cream can be skimmed for butter or ice cream.
Beef animals mature in 18 to 24 months and result in
small cuts of high quality lean meat, graded choice, with little waste. The expectable
average dress out is 50 to 60 percent and the beef is slightly darker
red than that of other breeds.
No other bovine can satisfy such a diverse market.
All animals in the ADCA registry were entered in accordance
with the regulations, procedures, and information that existed at the time of entry. Info from ADCA website