Supernumerary, or extra teats in ruminants are defined as any kind of teat that is in excess of the normal variety of teats. Having five or 6 teats is not regular in a cow, but not uncommon. Which ones room extra? Usually, the is an extremely obvious; sometimes it is helpful to look at the placement, size, and sphincter advance of every one of the teats to determine the vital ones verses the extra ones. Many of the extra teats in cattle are blind, and do not have actually a streak canal or attachments to mammary tissue. A remote teat is not qualified of creating milk. Remote teats room often uncovered in pairs. The is not unusual in cattle to uncover a pair that “button-like” projections on the rear quarters, or a pair of lesser occurred dangly teats beside the good ones. Causing little more than an unsightly behind udder view, blind teats in a advertising beef or goat herd are not frequently a problem.

You are watching: How many teats does a cow have


Most extra teats are of no consequence, however in part instances, castle can reason problems down the road. Once an extra teat is closely associated with one of the essential teats, it may interfere through milkability. To nurse efficiently, a calf will kind a seal approximately the base of the teat. 2 teats in near proximity might limit the capability of the calf to latch on properly. One extra teat closely linked with a important one can additionally prevent milking tools from obtaining a proper seal. Supernumerary teats may likewise cause nipple confusion; occasionally, a child can obtain so focused on a bogus teat that he inadvertently ignores the actual milk supply and also ends up v hypoglycemia or fail of passive transfer (FPT).

The rare extra teat the is capable of developing a bit of milk is likewise the one the will possibly cause more harm 보다 good. Not only can a child waste a the majority of time on this teat without much progress, the teat can be strange shaped and also either not be totally milked out or no be milked in ~ all. Residual milk can potentially bring about infection in the udder, mastitis. Goats will have the same extra teat worries as cattle. Yet, goats can likewise have some unusual extra teats that branch turn off the side of an additional teat, typically called antler teats, fish-tail teats or spurs. They room interesting, but can reason problems with nursing and also milking.


Extra teats room hereditary. An option and culling will help to mitigate the hereditary potential because that extra teats in her herd. The is difficult to eliminate the gene every together, as there room carriers that will certainly not exhibit the condition, yet they deserve to pass it to their offspring.

Consider teat remove if a supernummary teat can potentially reason difficulties with nursing, milking or exhibition. Examine heifers and also goat children for extra teats at 2 to 4 months of period for beforehand detection and also removal. Stress and discomfort through teat removal rises with age. In cattle, processing is a convenient time to eliminate undesirable teats, together they space becoming occurred enough to acknowledge as problematic. As heifers mature to adulthood, teat removed is just recommended in cases of significant injury. Goats have actually a an extremely low pain yongin for teat surgery. General anesthesia is essential to consider, as neighborhood anesthesia is regularly painful in itself and also inadequate.

See more: Fast-Moving Currents Of Air That Occur Above The Friction Layer Are Called _____.

When surgically removed, pain monitoring is important in both heifers and doelings. After-care is minimal, only requiring day-to-day monitoring. Make certain that the surgical treatment site continues to be clean and also dry. Any problems v the site have to be brought automatically to the fist of her veterinarian. If exterior sutures are placed, suture removal wake up in 7 come 10 days. 

About the AuthorDr. Colleen Lewis is a 1996 graduate of Kansas State University, university of vet Medicine. She career has taken her to numerous places together a practice owner, consultant, embryologist, and also mentor. She enjoys mixed animal practice, teaching, traveling, farming and also high school sports through her husband, Andrew and also their three boys.