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Breed: Dexter:

  • Dexters are the smallest breed. The average Dexter stands around 3 feet high and weighs between 800 and 1000 pounds.
  • They are very well proportioned, however, so without a frame of reference they do not look small.
  • Some Dexters have short legs, others have long legs.
  • Dexters are normally a solid brownish black or sometimes a dark red.
  • They also have black skin, a short face with a broad forehead, a hair foretop and short horns.
  • Dexter cows are perfect family dairy cows, producing about 2 gallons of milk and 3 quarts of cream a day.
  • Dexters are also strong and can pull plows; they are also tractable animals.
  • There are a couple of theories about the origins of the Dexter.
  • Both theories have the origin as the Kerry, a rare Irish breed.
  • The Dexter started to become known in the 1700s when small farmers found the Dexter very practical for use on small plots of land.
  • Later, the novelty of the cute, small bovines, made them popular on English estates.
  • The breed society in the U.S. formed in 1911.

Short legged Dexter

Source: A Field Guide to Cows , by John Pukite, Falcon Press, Helena, Montana, 1996, pp. 30-31.
Picture from Hobbit Hill Dexter Stud