On average, the gestation period or length-of-pregnancy of a cow is 285 days long. This is similar to the pregnancy period of a woman, which is closer to around 9 months or ~260 days.
However, actual gestation period of a cow can range from 270 days to 295 days, depending primarily on breed[s], age, body condition and nutritional health. Gestation period is also controlled by genetics, but not rate of maturity. The rate of maturity is more to do with the age a bovine reaches when it starts to put fat down, not muscle, and has very little to nothing to do with reproductive characteristics including length of gestation.
Here are some rules of thumb to remember when trying to figure out how long your cows or heifers will be pregnant for:
Please see the related questions below for various breeds and their consequential length of gestation.
Not really. On average they are similar (around 285 days) but NEVER the EXACT same. For instance, a Jersey cow will have a shorter gestation period than a Charolais cow, and a thin Angus heifer will have a longer pregnancy than a normally-conditioned cow of the same breed. How long a cow's gestation period depends on breeding, health, conformation and age. See the related question below for more information on this.
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