What Do Minecraft Cows Eat? - Gamer Journalist
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What Do Minecraft Cows Eat?

You don't have to feed them, though if you want to, it'd probably help to know what they like.
Image via Mojang/Microsoft

I’ve never lived on a ranch, so I’m no expert when it comes to caring for livestock. Luckily, caring for cows in Minecraft requires no prior experience in handling farm animals. You don’t even have to feed them, though if you want to, it’d probably help to know what they like.

So, what do Minecraft cows eat?

What Do Minecraft Cows Eat?

As previously stated, cows in Minecraft don’t need to be hand-fed to stay alive. Whether in the wild or in a penned-off area, they’ll just mosey around, minding their own business. However, whether you feel like giving your cows a treat or, more importantly, want them to breed and make more cows for you, you can hand-feed them a treat. That treat is simple wheat.

You can obtain samples of wheat from chests in dungeons, villages, shipwrecks, and elsewhere, and once you have a sample to start with, you can plant it in soil tilled with a hoe to grow more for yourself. Give your planted wheat plenty of water and sunshine, and it’ll sprout and multiply for you to harvest. When you’ve got some wheat, just equip it, walk up to a cow, and right-click to feed it to them. You can actually get cows to follow you around a bit by just holding the wheat in your hand, which is a handy way to relocate them if you don’t have a lead available.

Feeding, Breeding, and Calves

Image via Mojang/Microsoft

When you feed a cow some wheat, you’ll receive a small handful of XP orbs. Additionally, a spattering of red hearts will pop out of the cow’s head. This signifies that the cow is now in “love mode,” which means it’s ready to find a mate and breed. If you feed two cows some wheat, they’ll pair off, rub noses for a few moments, and then a newborn calf will pop out. Cows can breed as many times as you like, though they do need a five-minute cooldown between breeding sessions.

Calves will stick close to their parent cows, though in the event they’re separated from them, they’ll automatically pathfind to the next nearest cow and stick with them. Calves take 20 minutes in real-time to reach maturity, but if you have some more wheat handy, you can feed it to them to reduce the amount of time it takes them to become adults. Every piece of wheat you feed a calf will slice off 10% of the time it takes for them to mature. Once a calf reaches maturity, you can do everything with it that you’d do with any other cow, including feeding it more wheat for breeding.

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