18 Different Types of Cattle Breeds

Types of Cattle Breeds
Photo by Daniel Quiceno M on Unsplash

Cattle have been around humans since the beginning of civilization, and they’ve been helping humans since then, too. Cattle produce milk, which we use to make cheese and butter.

Also, their meat supplies us with protein and iron. Besides, you may think all cattle are the same, but they’re not.

Cattle are often categorized by what you can use them for and what type of habitat they can survive in.

Also, some types of cattle will not do well in others. In this guide, we’ll discuss the different types of cattle breeds– how many there are and what each of them does best.

This guide will help you make an informed decision when purchasing your next cow or bull from your local ranch.

1. Belted Galloway

The Belted Galloway is a Scottish beef cattle breed. It is black with a white belt around its middle. The Belted Galloway is a hardy breed that does well in cold, wet conditions. 

Also, the breed is known for its excellent marbling and flavor. Belted Galloways are suitable for both beef and dairy production. The Belted Galloway traces back to 18th-century Scotland. 

Furthermore, in the U.S., these cows are raised primarily in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and the Dakotas (U.S.).

They are found on family farms and in larger herds in commercial feedlots.

The British Society of Animal Science recognizes this as one of the world’s most important beef breeds. 

This recognition is due to their superb quality meat characteristics. The Belted Galloway is one of the different types of cattle breeds that are excellent meat producers.

2. Hereford

The Hereford is a British breed of beef cattle developed in the 18th century in England. The Hereford developed from stock originating in Herefordshire, England.

Hereford cattle live in Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United States, South America, and Africa today. 

Additionally, Herefords are used primarily for beef production and are a dual-purpose breed suitable for beef and dairy production. The Hereford is a medium to a large-sized animal with a compact body and short legs. 

Also, the coat is typically red or red with white markings. These different types of cattle breeds might be worth considering if you run a commercial beef farm.

3. Dexter 

Dexter cattle are a miniature heritage breed from Ireland. They were initially bred as dual-purpose cows, meaning they were for milk and meat production.

Dexter cows are mostly kept as dairy cows, although they are smaller than most other dairy breeds. Also, they are known for being very docile and easy to handle.

Dexter isn’t one of the different types of cattle breeds with large sizes. If you don’t want a big animal, Dexter cattle is it.

4. Angus

Angus cattle are among the most popular and different types of cattle breeds in the United States. They are known for their high-quality meat, which is why they are often helpful in commercial beef production.

Angus cattle are also relatively easy to care for, which makes them a good choice for small-scale farmers and ranchers.

Here are five things you should know about Angus cattle: 

  1. Angus cattle are a popular breed of beef cattle in the United States. 
  2. They are known for their high-quality meat. 
  3. Angus cattle are often used in commercial beef production. 
  4. They are relatively easy to care for. 
  5. Angus cattle were initially bred in Scotland.

5. Guernsey cows

Guernsey cows are a popular breed of dairy cow. They are known for their high butterfat content, which makes them ideal for making cheese and other dairy products. Guernsey cows are also known for their docile nature, which makes them easy to handle. 

In addition, the average Guernsey cow produces about 6,000 pounds of milk annually. The Guernsey cow is one of the different types of cattle breeds that are good milk producers.

6. Holstein Friesian cows

The Holstein Friesian is the world’s most common dairy cow, making up around 90% of the U.S. dairy herd. They are large cows with black-and-white markings.

Holsteins are known for their high milk production, averaging around 23,000 pounds annually. Also, they are one of the heaviest breeds, weighing around 1,500 pounds.

Holsteins make excellent dairy cows but produce meat; this makes them a good dual-purpose breed. Which of these different types of cattle breeds are you thinking of buying next?

7. British Whites

British Whites are a dual-purpose breed, meaning you can use them for dairy and beef production. They’re known for being docile, which makes them easy to handle, and they’re also very hardy.

British whites are one of the different types of cattle breeds that can withstand harsh conditions. 

Furthermore, these cattle are the largest of the native British cattle breeds, characterized by their white coat with black points. The most common use for British Whites is beef cows, which are also suitable for dairy production.

8. Brahman

The Brahman is a popular breed of zebu cattle. It was initially developed in India and is now vital in many different parts of the world. Brahman cattle are known for their resistance to heat and pests, as well as their docile nature. 

Additionally, Brahman cows are often used for dairy production, while bulls are commonly helpful for beef production.

Other uses include draft animals, showing, and rodeo competitions. Brahman cattle is also one of the different types of cattle breeds used for other purposes.

9. Gelbvieh 

Gelbvieh is a German word that means yellow cattle, and they are a dual-purpose breed suitable for meat and milk production. Gelbvieh is known for its docile nature, making them easy to handle. 

Additionally, they are known for being efficient converters of feed into meat and milk. These different types of cattle breeds can be extra productive if their owners appropriately breed them.

10. Charolais

The Charolais is a French beef breed developed in the 1800s, and it’s one of the world’s oldest and most popular beef breeds. The Charolais is known for its large size, gentle disposition, and high-quality meat. 

Further, the breed is used extensively in Europe and North America for beef production. The Charolais is one of the different cattle breeds with a long history attached to its name.

11. Brangus

Brangus is a cross between Brahman and Angus cattle. The resulting breed is black or red, hardy, and docile. They are known for being heat-tolerant and having high fertility rates. 

Also, Brangus cattle are used primarily for beef production, and cattle in this category are also called Braford cattle. The Brangus fits into the different types of cattle breeds with exceptional breed qualities.

12. Ongole cattle

Ongole cattle are a type of zebu cattle, which is a species of domesticated ox. They originated in India and are used for draft work, as well as for their meat and hide. Ongole is a large animal, with bulls weighing up to 1,000 kilograms (2,200 lb). 

Additionally, they have long, curved horns and a humped back. The breed gets its name from the district of Ongole in Andhra Pradesh, India. The Ongole is one of the different types of cattle breeds you might need extra space to rear.

13. Brown Swiss

Brown Swiss are a dairy breed that produces large quantities of milk with high butterfat and protein content. They are also known for their calm temperament, making them easy to work with.

Brown Swiss cattle are known to have originated in the Swiss Alps. However, they can be found worldwide today, just like some other types of cattle breeds.

There are several different types of Brown Swiss cows. For example, the American Brown Swiss, the French Brown Swiss, and the British Brown Swiss.

14. Aberdeen-Angus Cattle

These cows are primarily black, but they can also be red. They’re a Scottish breed developed in the early 1800s. Today, they’re famous worldwide like other different types of cattle breeds for their beef. The meat is known for being tender and juicy, with high-fat content.

15. Chianina

Chianina is a giant breed of oxen, weighing about 2400 pounds when fully grown! They originate from Italy and have distinctive white hair over their bodies which makes them easy to spot.

The Chianina is an Italian cattle breed developed in the central region of Italy. Also, it is one of the world’s oldest and largest cattle breeds.

The Chianina is a large, white-coated breed with long horns. They are known for their lean meat and milk production. Furthermore, it is said to be one of the European beef producers. The Chianina can be found mainly in Italy but also in other countries.

16. Beefalo

The Beefalo is one of the different types of cattle breeds that is a cross between a bison and a domestic cow. Cattle breeders initially bred this type of cattle in the early 1800s.

The breeders attempted to create a hardier, disease-resistant animal that could be useful for beef and dairy production. Today, Beefalos are primarily found in North America and are helpful for both meat and milk production. 

17. Chillingham cattle

The Chillingham cattle are a breed of wild cattle found in Northumberland, England. These cows are known for their unique white coloration, which is a result of leucism. Interestingly, all Chillingham cattle are born with brown eyes but turn blue as they age. 

Also, these cows are pretty large, with bulls weighing up to 1,800 pounds and cows weighing up to 1,200 pounds. Has this guide on different types of cattle breeds been helpful?

18. Braunvieh

The Braunvieh is a dual-purpose breed, meaning it can be helpful in both dairy and beef production. It is one of the oldest cattle breeds, originating in Switzerland. The Braunvieh is a large breed, with cows averaging 1,500 pounds and bulls averaging 2,000 pounds. 

In addition to being a popular cattle breed, this cow is also famous for giving birth to quintuplets. Although there are many different cattle breeds, this one has long been considered the king of all cattle.


Different types of cattle breeds are helpful for various purposes. Some are better suited for dairy production, while others are better suited for beef production. Breeders developed various crossbreeds to combine the characteristics of different breeds.

Ultimately, the type of cattle that is best for a particular operation depends on the specific needs and goals of the procedure.

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