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Breed: Holstein:

  • The Holstein produces the most milk of all breeds.
  • The production record is held by the cow Raim Mark Jinx -- over 100,000 glasses of milk! No one is certain how many of these glasses of milk were served up alongside cookie platters, but we all know that those cookies all went down a little better with some Holstein milk!
  • The origins of the Holstein are uncertain, but records mention black-and-white cattle in the northern Netherlands before the 1600s.
  • The Dutch first brought Holsteins into New York; at that time the cows were simply called Dutch cattle.
  • A newspaper editor named them Holstein-Friesian, which was later shortened to Holstein.
  • The US breed society formed in 1871.
  • Holsteins are typically white cows with big, black spots that usually cover 50% of the cow's body.
  • But, the spot coverage can range from none at all (an all white cow) to complete (an all black cow).
  • Occasionally, a red-spotted Holstein will be born. Red is the recessive color.
  • Holsteins have a broad face with a wide muzzle, and a tall, stately stance.


Source: A Field Guide to Cows, by John Pukite, Falcon Press, Helena, Montana, 1996, pp. 16-17.