What is the difference between a Neli Ravi buffalo and a Sahiwal cow?

Are you a farmer or an animal enthusiast looking to learn more about livestock breeds? If so, you have probably heard of the Neli Ravi buffalo and the Sahiwal cow and may be wondering what sets them apart. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the differences between these two popular livestock breeds.


When it comes to farm animals, there are many different species and breeds to choose from. Among those are the Neli Ravi buffalo and the Sahiwal cow. Both of these animals have been used extensively in farming and dairy production for generations, but they have distinct characteristics which make them better suited for different purposes. In this blog post, we will explore the differences between these two animals, including physical attributes, temperament, milk production and more. We will also compare the cost associated with each breed so that you can make an informed decision when choosing which breed is right for your farm.

General Characteristics of Neli Ravi Buffalo

The Neli Ravi buffalo is a breed of buffalo found primarily in the Punjab province of Pakistan. It is a medium-sized animal, typically weighing between 400 to 600 kilograms. The coat is usually a dark gray or sandy color, with some individuals having white patches. The breed is known for its hardiness and disease resistance, as well as its ability to thrive in harsh climates. Neli Ravi buffaloes are also known for their relatively high milk yields, typically producing up to 10 liters per day. They are also known for their docile temperament and intelligence.

General Characteristics of Sahiwal Cow

Sahiwal cows are a medium-sized dairy breed originating in the Punjab region of Pakistan. They have a distinct, light red coat with a white face and white markings on the neck and legs. Sahiwal cows are known for their hardiness and heat tolerance, making them well-suited to the harsh climate of their native region. They also have a relatively docile temperament and are easy to handle. Sahiwal cows are known for their high milk yields, which can reach up to 7,000 liters per lactation. They are also known for their high fat and protein content in their milk, which makes it an excellent choice for cheese production. Sahiwal cows are also known for their long lactation lengths, which can reach up to 300 days.

Differences in Milk Production

When it comes to milk production, there are several differences between Neli Ravi buffalo and Sahiwal cows. Buffalo milk typically contains more total proteins and caseins than cow’s milk. However, cow’s milk has the advantage of providing a higher fat percentage, which is beneficial for infant feeding. Furthermore, the protein quality and quantity of milk from different species can vary. A proteomic approach has been used to carry out high-resolution analyses of the complex mixture to quantify the protein profiling in milk from both Neli Ravi buffaloes and Sahiwal cows. The results revealed that Neli Ravi buffaloes had higher total protein and casein content than Sahiwal cows. Additionally, differences in fat percentage were also observed between the two species.

Difference in Temperament

The Neli Ravi buffalo is known to be a docile and easy-going animal while the Sahiwal cow is known to be more active and energetic. The Neli Ravi is usually content to stay in one place and graze, while the Sahiwal is often seen moving around and seeking out new pastures. The Neli Ravi is also known to be more tolerant of handling and willing to accept humans more easily, making it a better choice for those looking for an animal to keep as a pet. The Sahiwal, on the other hand, is more independent and can be more difficult to handle.

Difference in Adaptability to Climate

The Nili-Ravi breed of buffalo is well-suited to the climate of Pakistan, which has hot summers and mild winters. It is well-adapted to the local climate and can survive in extreme temperatures. On the other hand, Sahiwal cows are more tolerant of cold weather. They can tolerate cold weather better than Nili-Ravi buffaloes and are better suited for areas with harsher winters. Sahiwal cows also have a higher disease resistance due to their greater ability to adapt to changing climates.

Difference in Disease Resistance

The Nili-Ravi buffalo is known for their superior disease resistance compared to other dairy breeds. The breed is also resistant to some common diseases like foot and mouth disease, hemorrhagic septicemia, and trypanosomosis. Sahiwal cows, on the other hand, are generally more susceptible to disease due to their size and lack of hardiness. However, they are less prone to certain diseases than other dairy breeds, such as mastitis. Additionally, Sahiwal cows have been known to develop a high resistance to some of the more common diseases in their region, such as ticks and insects.

Difference in Weight and Size

The Neli Ravi buffalo is a large breed and can weigh up to 1,500 kgs. It is the largest of the Indian breeds and the males are usually taller than the females. The Sahiwal cow is a medium-sized breed and typically weighs around 400 to 600 kgs. The cow’s body is slim and tall compared to that of the buffalo, with long legs. The males are usually taller than the females in this breed as well.

Difference in Calving Interval

One of the main differences between a Neli Ravi buffalo and a Sahiwal cow is the calving interval. The pattern of calving was documented in Neli Ravi buffaloes and compared with Sahiwal cattle and Sahiwal (x Friesian or Jersey) crosses. It was found that the calving interval in first and later parity was different in Sahiwal cows but not in buffaloes. In addition, the Sahiwal cows had shorter calving intervals than the cross-bred cows. This indicates that the Neli Ravi buffalo may have a longer calving interval than the Sahiwal cow, making it more suitable for dairy production.

Differences In Feed Requirements

Neli Ravi buffaloes have higher feed requirements than Sahiwal cows. Buffalo feed generally consists of hay, grain, and fresh or silage forages. Buffaloes require more protein and energy in their diet than cows. Buffaloes also require more roughage in the form of hay and silage than cows, as they have a higher capacity to digest and utilize fibrous materials. Buffaloes also have a higher specific intake rate, meaning they need more feed per unit of body weight than cows. This is due to their larger digestive systems, which require more energy to digest and absorb feed. In addition, buffaloes need more food during the lactation period than cows because of the higher milk production levels.

Different Maintenance and Grooming Requirements

When it comes to maintenance and grooming, there are some notable differences between a Neli Ravi buffalo and a Sahiwal cow. The Neli Ravi buffalo is a hardy breed and is able to tolerate different weather conditions without much maintenance. However, they do need to be kept in a clean environment and may require regular brushing to keep their coats healthy and free of dirt. On the other hand, the Sahiwal cow requires more regular and intensive grooming and maintenance. They need to be groomed regularly in order to keep their coats healthy and free of dirt, lice, and other parasites. Additionally, Sahiwal cows need to be provided with ample shelter from the elements, as they are more sensitive to extreme temperatures than Neli Ravi buffaloes.

Different Utilization of byproducts from Processing

When it comes to the utilization of byproducts from processing, the Neli Ravi buffalo and the Sahiwal cow have some notable differences. Buffalo milk has the disadvantage of requiring reduction in fat for infant feeding, whereas cow’s milk is often preferred for its higher fat content. In addition, due to the higher fat content of buffalo milk, it is more suitable for cheese production, whereas cow’s milk is better for making yogurt and other fermented dairy products. Moreover, buffalo milk can be used for making soap, detergents, and other cosmetic products.

Cost Comparison for Neli Ravi and Sahiwal Breeds

When it comes to cost comparison between Neli Ravi and Sahiwal breeds, there’s a lot to consider. Neli Ravi buffaloes are generally more expensive than Sahiwal cows for a few reasons. First, buffaloes require more land, feed and maintenance than cows, making them more expensive to keep. Additionally, buffaloes produce less milk than cows, meaning farmers must purchase more of them in order to meet the same production demands. On the other hand, Sahiwal cows produce more milk than buffaloes and require less land, feed and maintenance. This makes them a more cost-effective option for farmers looking to maximize their milk production. In addition to the initial purchase cost, farmers should also factor in the cost of maintaining both breeds into their overall budget.


In conclusion, the Neli Ravi breed of buffalo and the Sahiwal breed of cow have many differences that must be taken into consideration when deciding which breed to raise. The Neli Ravi buffalo produces more milk than the Sahiwal cow, but the cow is easier to care for, requires less maintenance and is more adaptable to different climates. Additionally, the cow is less susceptible to disease, has a shorter calving interval, and is capable of producing higher quality milk. The Sahiwal cow also yields more byproducts from processing than the Neli Ravi buffalo. Ultimately, cost should also be considered when selecting which breed to raise. The Neli Ravi buffalo requires more intensive care and feeding than the Sahiwal cow, and is generally more expensive to maintain in the long run.

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