We all know of those really old cows and most of us have some. However, it would be pretty hard to convince a banker that those old cows will remain productive for any amount of time. Seems like during a cow's life, she has a gradual start up, a peak, a gradual down turn, and then an end. We can't predict when or what that end will be - not breeding back at age 10, weaning off a tiny calf at age 12, breeding back late at age 14, getting cancer eye at age 6. Who knows... We have a 17 year old cow who has always calved in the first 1/3 of calving season year after year, her calf has always been good sized at weaning. However, we are nearly thru with calving and she just now calved at the tail end of the season. Her body condition is not great, she is now requiring more care than the rest of the mature cow herd. I think this is her last calf here. We also have a 7 year old cow who has cancer eye... she's done here too.