Fact of the Day: Cows and their Weird Stomachs

cows have four stomachs

Did you know that cows have four-chambered stomachs?



Although cow stomachs are nothing like your own, cows technically only have one stomach, but it has four distinct compartments. That’s why people often say that cows have four stomachs. What are the parts of a cow’s stomach?


Rumen – This is the first part. It helps break down complex plant products like grass.

Reticulum – Here the food mixes with the cow’s saliva and produces cud. Cows burp up the cud into their mouths and chew it to help break it down more. When you see a cow that looks like she is chomping on bubble gum, really she is chewing her cud.

Omasum – Here all the water is absorbed out of the food.

Abomasum – Here is where the food is finally digested, similar to what happens in a human stomach.


What exactly is it that goes into our cows’ stomachs? Our cows are fed a mix of corn silage, hay silage, grain (corn), distillers grains, and soy bean meal. On our farm, we grow the corn, wheat, and hay that goes into our cows’ feed.


Have more cool facts? What other fun facts do you know about animals? Send us your suggestion to editor@learnwithnoni.com and we’ll make it into a #FactOfTheDay for the #NoniTribe!