A Dexter cow in the running for the title of World’s Shortest Cow cow has given birth to an 18kg calf in Donegal.
Ruby, who will be measured in seven months to see if she is the world’s shortest cow, gave birth to Shorty over the weekend.
Her owner James Vance, speaking on Today FM, said that she calved herself.
“I was keeping a tight eye on her but she calved herself; all was good, normal and natural so happy days,” he said.
Vance explained that he didn’t think the calf would be as small as it was.
“I knew it was going to be tiny because of the size of the mother, I was expecting it to be a bit bigger now to be honest but that happens.”
Vance farms sheep and has five other short-legged Dexters and a short-legged Dexter bull.
“I had one cow and I had to get her company so I was watching something on telly and read a bit online about the Irish Dexter dying out so I decided to look at a Dexter and I came on this one and bought her.
“To listen to him [the bull] you’d think he was about 2t weight, he tries to live up to his name, Tyson.
“When you get them young enough they’d be actually easy to manage but they’d be a bit cross when they calve and all the rest but they’re handy enough to handle in fairness.”
Vance says that he hasn’t measured the calf yet that he has plenty more to be doing, but she’s about the size of a fully grown terrier.
“I didn’t think it was going to be such a big deal. Well there’s other things to be done it’s a farm at the end of the day.
“She has to be three years of age before you can take a proper measurement, I only learned that yesterday (Sunday July 26).”
Shorty is the daughter of Ruby and grand-daughter of Ella, who measures 78cm. Last year she was beaten to the title of world’s shortest cow by a 61.5cm cow called Manikyam on an Indian farm.
The Vances believe that the Dexter calf, once she is fully grown, could win the title for Ireland.
Vance’s son Nathan has adopted the calf as a pet.
Archie is the shortest bull in the world and he resides in Co. Antrim.
The Guinness World Records says that he measures 76.2 cm (30 in) from the hoof to the withers, 15 inches shorter than other bulls of his breed (typically 45 in).
The height of the bull, who is also of the Dexter breed, means that he’s dwarfed by the other animals at his farm, including even the dogs and goats.
Ryan Lavery bought Archie the bull at five months old and says that if it wasn’t for his small size, the fate of the bull would have been very different, he says.
“When we bought Archie, he was destined for beef. However, by Christmas time, he still hadn’t grown and because we had become so fond of him we decided to keep him. His size saved his life and now he’s going to live out the rest of his life as a pet.”