Housing Requirements for Cow


Selection of location
  • A dairy building should be at a higher elevation than the surrounding ground to offer a good slope for rainfall and drainage for the wastes of the dairy to avoid stagnation within.
  • Foundation soil as far as possible should not be too dehydrated or desiccated. Such a soil is susceptible to considerable swelling during rainy season and exhibit numerous cracks and fissures.
  • A dairy building should be located to a maximum exposure to the sun in the north and minimum exposure to the sun in the south and protection from prevailing strong wind currents whether hot or cold.
  • Abundant supply of fresh, clean and soft water should be available at a cheap rate.
  • Electricity is the most important sanitary method of lighting a dairy. Since a modern dairy always handles electric equipments which are also economical, it is desirable to have an adequate supply of electricity.
  • Cattle yards should be so constructed and situated in relation to feed storages, hay stacks, silo and manure pits as to effect the most efficient utilization of labour.
Housing space requirements

Housing space requirements for crossbred cattle


Manger Space (mtr.)

Standing or covered area (sq.mtr.)

Open Space (sq.mtr.)

4-6 months




6-12 months




1-2 years








Pregnant cows








*To be housed individually

Design specifications
  • The standing space is provided in such a way that the animals are facing the manger, which is adjacent to the wall. The length and width of standing space is kept variable from 1.5 to 1.7 m and 1 to 1.2 m per animal respectively.
  • The manger should be constructed in such a way as to facilitate easy cleaning and prevent wastage of fodder. The manger shall be of continuous type. The manger wall may be constructed with wooden plank, brick in lime or cement mortar.
  • The flooring should be non-slippery, hard and impervious. It can be brick laid on edge or stone slabs or concrete. A plinth of at least 15 cm in height shall be provided for the floor. The floor may be given a slope of 1 in 40 to 1 in 60 depending upon the type of flooring. The flooring of the manger may be the same as that of the floor but the surface should be smooth with all corners rounded off. A two-way tethering arrangement may be provided.
  • The roof shall be a lean-to-type suitably slopped according to local condition. The material for roofing may be thatch, tiles, G.I. sheets, asbestos cement etc. In summer the roof may be overlaid with thick thatch to lessen heat stress.
  • The drain will have to be laid just outside the shed. It can be built with brick and cement mortar with rounded corners. A slope of 1 in 40 is required. The width of the drain should be 30 cm and depth 6 to 7.5 cm providing a slope towards outside. The drain should lead to a urine pit having a depth not exceeding 40 cm. It may be circular or rectangular and covered with a lid.
References Kerala Agricultural University. 2001. Package of Practices- Recommendations: Veterinary and Animal Husbandry, Kerala Agricultural University, Trichur. .