Mini Highland Cow: The Ultimate Guide (Pros, Cons & Care)

Published: December 18, 2022

Brown mini highland cow standing outside on a green pasture
Credit: pixabay / Milesl

Mini Highland cows are becoming increasingly popular and for good reason! They are adorable and friendly and make great pets.

This article will cover everything you need to know about Mini Highland cows, from their size and diet to their personality and cost. We'll also give you some tips on taking care of these lovely creatures.

So read on to learn all about Mini Highland cows!

What is a Mini Highland Cow?

Multicolored mini highland cows standing in a row on some wood chips outside near a metal shed

Mini Highland Cows are a breed of cow characterized by their petite size and furry coats. They originated in the Highlands of Scotland, making them well-suited to survive cold weather climates and lush pasturelands.

These cows have shorter legs and smaller heads than other cattle breeds, ranging from 36 to 42 inches in height on average. Their soft furry coats come in shades of red, black, brown, yellow, white, or silver.

Are Mini Highland Cows Good Pets?

Brown and white mini highland cow on a leash getting its chin scratched by its owner

Mini Highland Cows may look like something from a fairy tale, but they make surprisingly good pets. These cows are known for their long shaggy coats, curved horns, and gentle nature.

Like other mini cow breeds, Highlands have become increasingly popular as a petting zoo and beloved companion animals due to their easygoing personalities and affectionate dispositions. They may be small, but they offer plenty of love and companionship that would make any pet owner extremely happy.

Mini Highlands are a unique pet option with one-of-a-kind personalities that bring out the best in those who choose to take them into their homes.

Related: Teacup Minis: Ultimate Care Guide

What are Mini Highland Cows good for?

Fuzzy brown mini highland cow standing on some grass on a sunny day with a boulder behind them

Mini Highlands may be small but have many uses.

Mini Highland Cows can mow your lawn, as they naturally graze on grass and tolerate cold climates better than other cattle breeds.

Miniature cows are also becoming increasingly popular as pet companions since they have sweet temperaments and are less intimidating than full-size cattle.

In addition, Mini Highlands make fantastic show animals in exhibitions like county fairs for their attractive and unique look compared to other cattle breeds.

With so many valuable qualities, Mini Highland Cows prove that good things can come in small packages!

Related: Mini Jersey Cows: Perfect Addition To Your Farm

What are the Pros of owning a Mini Highland Cow?

  • Produce milk

  • Docile

  • Require little maintenance

  • Hardy in cold environments

  • Takes up little space

Mini Highland Cows offer a variety of benefits for small farms. They can produce small amounts of milk and are docile creatures requiring very little maintenance and upkeep. This makes them an ideal cow for any agricultural enthusiast looking for a low-input option.

In addition, highlands are hardy enough to survive blistering cold temperatures since they originate from the Scottish Highlands. Mini highlands alsotake up relatively little space, making them suitable for urban or suburban areas with little land available. They also tend to be charming, so pet owners often consider them gentle companions for their families.

If you're looking for something unique and special on your lot or in your home, there's nothing quite like having a highland cow living with you!

What are the Cons of owning a Mini Highland Cow?

A white furry mini highland cow standing on some mud with a fence in the background on a sunny day
  • Produce less beef

  • Vaccines required

  • Need to be social

  • May require more maintenance

Mini highland cows are quickly becoming a popular breed of miniature cattle, but there are some potential downsides to owning one.

You can use miniature highland cattle for beef, however, since they are so small, they naturally produce less beef per animal than other cattle breeds. Quantity-wise, they may not make the best option for a small farm.

As with regular-size cattle, miniature cattle also need vaccines, an expense you must be aware of before purchasing any highland cow. 

Since miniature highland cattle are so social, they're not adept at being alone. This means you will need to spend quality time with them regularly and/or buy more bovines to keep your highland cow company. If they are alone for too long, they may get stressed.

In addition, highland cattle may require more maintenance than other breeds. They have long hair, which can get dirtier, meaning you may have to clean them more often. It's also good practice to run your hands through their coat to see if there are any ticks. Tick prevention products are also an option especially if you know you live in a region where ticks are more common.

However, none of these concerns should deter anyone from experiencing the beauty of highland cows; with proper preparation and plenty of research, owning a mini highland cow can be a wonderful experience!

Do Mini Highland Cows Need to be Brushed?

A furry brown mini highland cow in the middle of a pasture on a sunny day

Highland cattle do not need to be brushed, but it could be a fun and relaxing activity. They'll love it, and you may form a closer bond with them, but this is not a requirement.

How Long do Mini Highland Cows Live?

A brown mother mini highland cow licking the face of her young calf

Despite their small stature, Mini Highland Cows, on average, live 12 to 15 years and could live up to 20 years, depending on the quality of care they receive from their owners.

Mini Highlanders form close bonds with their mother when they are born and generally form strong emotional attachments with their herd and human owners. They also grow to love the attention provided by humans and make endearing mascots and farm animals.

Without proper nourishment, such as access to fresh grass or hay and an adequate housing environment, Mini Highlanders will not reach their full potential in terms of life expectancy. Therefore, it is best for Mini Highland Cow owners to keep every aspect of their care in mind to promote longevity and, if needed, seek veterinary advice.

How Do You Care for a Mini Highland Cow?

Mini Highlands require the same kind of care that any house cow would need, such as daily exercise, general health care maintenance, and a healthy diet of hay and corn-based feed.


A brown mini highland cow with three other brown mini highland cattle in the back grazing grass on a sunny day

Mini Highland Cows are a small breed of cattle that weigh between 500 to 600 pounds.

These Cows are widely known for their unique diets. Mini Highland Cows love to graze on grass, hay, and other forages, but they also enjoy treats like apples, carrots, and pears as occasional supplements to their diets.

Mini cattle eat between 2% to 4% of their body weight daily. So if your Mini Highland Cow weighs 600 pounds, expect them to eat around 18 pounds daily.

Depending on the season and how active your mini cattle may be, keep an eye on how thick or thin they look and slightly adjust how much you feed them. Also, remember to provide them with plenty of fresh water!

Mini Highland Cows generally have a diverse diet of nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fats, and proteins that ensure optimal health. It is important to monitor Mini Highland Cows' diet carefully, as an unbalanced diet can cause malnutrition in these cows.


A large beautiful pasture on a clear day with the sun setting in the distance
Credit: / Federico Respini

Miniature Highland cattle require significantly less space than regular-sized Highland cows, which is one of their main advantages.

Generally, a Mini Highland Cow can live on at least one acre for grazing (not including shelters and pens). You can multiply the acreage per cow for cattle kept in herds - just ensure plenty of space for running around and lush grazing opportunities.

Ultimately, Mini Highland Cows do very well on smaller plots of land since they aren't too destructive - they rarely damage fences or bite wires.

Overall, these robust animals are self-sufficient and don't require large amounts of land compared to other breeds, which is very convenient for those with small plots.


A brown mini highland cow standing on some snow outside on a sunny day

Mini Highland Cows are remarkable creatures that can live in various climates. Compared to regular Highland Cows, mini Highland Cows do equally well in colder and warmer regions. 

It isn't recommended Mini Highlanders live in hot desert climates - they are better suited in colder climates, especially with their thick fur coats. However, they can adapt well to warmer climates, and herds have been found in Texas and Georgia.


A snowy farm with a barn and a cow with a fence in the distance on an overcast day
Credit: / Ante Hamersmit

Mini highland cows live in various shelters, depending on the climate they inhabit and their owner's preference.

In colder regions, these small cattle are typically kept warm in a barn or an enclosed shed, insulated to protect from inclement weather.

Similarly, some farmers prefer to insulate outdoor structures, such as simple lean-tos or three-sided shelters, giving them the best of both worlds - protection from harsh conditions while still providing the opportunity for grazing during fair weather.

No matter the shelter's form, mini highland cows depend on access to feed and water during cold months and plenty of space to move around freely inside.


Cattle grazing grass in a pasture that is full of trees enjoying the shade
Credit: / @fosterious

There is no specific amount of shade that these tiny cows need, but sheltering them and having trees for shade in their pasture is a must. Especially since we're talking miniature highland cattle, they may be more sensitive to cold and sun due to their small size.

Providing them with adequate shade ensures the safety and comfort of these miniature cattle.

Can Mini Highland Cows be Milked?

A glass of milk sitting on a white table
Credit: / @anvision

Seeing as these miniature cattle are so small, you may be wondering if these cows can be milked at all?

Their larger highland cow counterparts don't produce much milk as it is, meaning miniature highland cattle produce even less.

Highland cows are not the best at producing dairy; however, you can still milk them. However, if you want to start a dairy farm or have quality dairy cows, consider the popular Holstein Friesian cow. It's better suited to own mini highland cattle for lawnmowing and/or as domesticated pets.

Where Can You Buy a Mini Highland Cow?

The homepage of the Highland Cattle Society website with a mother and its calf on the homepage

There are multiple ways to purchase miniature highland cows. The easiest is online, where you can find people selling these wonderful creatures. You may come across local farm websites that are nearby or cattle societies that are selling highland cows.

If you're looking for a new addition to your family or just want a beautiful and docile animal to watch over your land, highland cows provide the perfect opportunity!

How much does a Mini Highland Cow cost?

The next question naturally is, how much do mini highland cattle cost?

Expect to spend at least a few thousand dollars on miniature highland cattle. A miniature highland will cost you anywhere from roughly $1,800 to $3,500.

Is This Miniature Breed Right for You?

There you have it! Everything you need to know about the Mini Highland Cow.

The Mini Highland Cow is an amiable and cute low-maintenance companion. They are not the ideal choice for producing meat and milk, but they make for great companions that only require around one acre of land.

Before you go out and purchase a Mini Highland Cow, do proper and adequate research to ensure that miniature highland cattle are suitable for you and your farm. In addition, please ensure that you have the means of efficiently taking care of them so they can live full, happy lives.

If you liked this article, be sure to check our other miniature cattle articles below!

Keep track of all your cattle with the #1 Cattle Management App

Download today for free!

Keep track of all your cattle with the #1 Cattle Management Software

Try out Ranchr today for free