Cows (female bovines) may live anywhere from 10 to over 20 years. Some cows may live shorter lives, depending on their health and productivity. Young cows and heifers may be culled from the herd between 6 to 24 months old if they have poor health, bad temperament, poor fertility, too small pelvic area for calving, poor feet and legs, and other reasons.
Cattle intended for beef have short lives as well. They only live to 24 to 36 months old before being slaughtered for beef. Most of these cattle would not fit well with a breeding program, as 99% of those that are fed and slaughtered for beef have already been deemed as inferior breeding stock for a variety of reasons like what was mentioned above.
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