When I think of Arizona, I think brown, dust, sand, dirt, desert, and cacti. I do not think dairy farm, but let me tell you; dairy farm tours is becoming a family friendly favorite in our house!
Disclaimer: I was provided the opportunity to visit Caballero Dairy farm with the Dairy Council of AZ through a campaign with Blended Extended. All opinions are my own.
Our family has visited at least three different dairy farms here in Arizona: Caballero Dairy in Eloy, Shamrock Farms in Stanfield, and Superstition Farm in Mesa. (Pictures in this post are from Caballero Dairy in March 2015.)
Visiting a dairy farm may not seem like a big deal, but let me tell you – hubby and I had a blast, and the kids enjoyed themselves! It is fun, educational, and such a different experience!
Things I Have Learned
- Arizona is actually a preferred climate for dairy farms because of the dry heat. The cows prefer dry heat and while the summer months can be grueling, dairy farms have multiple fans and overhead hanging to keep the cows cool.
- Caballero Dairy had 8,000 heads of cows/heifers (no male cows) with about a third of their cows/heifers active for milking.
- Additionally, Caballero Dairy has ‘replacement’ cows kept on hand for necessity.
- Superstition Farm does have male cows, but they are kept separate from the females except for breeding time. Superstition Farm also uses colored paint on the back of cows to help figure out which cows have bred and which have not.
- Caballero Dairy’s cows get milked using a 72 stall rotator. Shamrock Farms uses a similar method.
- Once on the rotator, a worker puts iodine on their teets, another wipes off the iodine, and a third places the milkers on the cows.
You can see from the picture below that the cows are led in on one side and let out on the other side.
- Dairy farms can be completely computerized, like Caballero Dairy. They can tell everything they need to know about a specific cow with just the wave of a wand.
If you don’t know, I am a huge animal lover. I love all animals – cows included. I thoroughly enjoy sitting and observing animals and the cows were no exception.
Going during baby season is quite the experience that I cannot even put into words! Seeing the baby cows, petting them, feeding them and letting them suck on your fingers. If you are a city kid, it is the experience of a lifetime!
When I tell you that visiting a dairy farm is a new family friendly activity, it is truth! Each dairy farm does things differently and it is so neat to learn how they do things. It makes for a great educational experience (think homeschooling!) and it’s fun too!
Have you ever been to a dairy farm? Which one and where was it? I definitely want to tour more!
PS: Find local farm tours near you by going to Google and searching “farm tours in [your state]”. You can find Arizona farm tours here!