We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What do Livestock Farmers do?

Mary McMahon
Updated Jan 25, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Livestock farmers rear livestock, animals raised for fiber, food, or labor. A livestock farmer can handle anything from a small family farm to a large commercial farming operation, dealing with animals like goats, chickens, horses, sheep, cattle, and turkeys, among others. Some livestock farmers learn their trade through apprenticeship, often on a family farm, while others acquire skills through training in professional schools and colleges, and on working farms which accept employees who are interested in learning the farming trade.

The average livestock farmer tends to wear a lot of hats. He or she is involved in the breeding of livestock, making decisions about when to breed, which animals should be bred, and how breeding should progress to bring out positive traits or preserve a bloodline. The farmer may also collect semen for sale to other farms or artificial insemination on a farm where animals are not bred directly. During pregnancy and labor, the animals are monitored closely for signs of distress, especially if they are highly valuable. Livestock farmers keep meticulous records about breeding and genetics with the goal of breeding healthy animals and keeping track of the animals in their care and the animals they sell.

On a day to day basis, a livestock farmer supervises the care and feeding of the animals. He or she may provide basic veterinary care to injured or sick animals, follow recommendations from a veterinarian to help specific animals recover from illnesses, or bring in a vet to deal with emerging health problems. The farmer also handles orders for feed and supplies, walks fence lines to ensure that animals are properly confined, keeps barns and stabling areas clean and orderly, handles waste management, and delegates various tasks to employees.

In the case of livestock raised for meat, the farmer either supervises slaughter or arranges to sell the animals to a slaughterhouse or feedlot. Milk animals such as cows also require special care, including daily milking and processing of the milk. Animals used for fiber, such as sheep, must be regularly sheared and may require special treatments to maintain the quality of the fiber, another task which falls on the shoulders of the livestock farmer. If livestock farmers are working with animals raised for their labor, they also participate in training these animals and selling or renting them, whether they are oxen used for plowing or horses ridden recreationally.

The work of livestock farmers is never done. They tend to get up extremely early to get started with tasks on the farm from milking to placing orders for feed, and they go to bed late, after they have put the animals to bed and dealt with paperwork which could not be finished during the day. This type of work is also very physically demanding, as livestock farmers must be able to handle large and sometimes recalcitrant animals in addition to hauling heavy loads of feed and manure.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a WiseGeek researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Learn more
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.