A bunk-space recommendation of 2 feet per animal is preferred for lactating cows, but when it comes to special-needs cows, you probably should provide 3 feet of bunk space per animal. That’s particularly true if you co-mingle first-calf heifers with older cows, says Jim Barmore, a Monsanto Dairy Business technical service specialist.

When possible, plan for 3 feet of bunk space per animal when building a new special-needs barn.