Baby Hints & Tips

Introducing cows milk

Introducing Cows milkWhat age did your LO go from BF/FF to cows milk? How did you do it? Part transition? Bottle or sippy cup? Any issues?

  • My son was f/f & at around 1 year old started to give him cows milk in the same bottle he was used to drinking the formula in. He didn’t seem to notice the change at all. After a few weeks of doing formula & cows milk the child health nurse said I should only be doing one or the other not both so I stopped formula all together.  After another month ppl were shocked I hadn’t watered the milk down 1st. I’d never heard or thought about it but my bub coped fine luckily 🙂 Julie
  • I gave her a couple of small drinks of cold cows milk during the day to get her used to the taste for a week after her 1st birthday, then changed over completely when formula tin was empty!! No turning back. Old Irish wives tale is to water it down 2/3 milk 1/3 water and that takes out the “sicky” part if bubs is sick – I can verify this works!! Sherrie
  • My LOs were/are all exclusively breastfeed and have never drunk cows milk. My first weaned off b/f at 13 months, my second at 16 months and I am still going with my third at 22 months. From 6 months old, they had water from a sippy cup + breast milk (from me). Once they wheaned themselves, they went to just water, never taken milk from a cup or bottle. They get more than enough diary/calcium intake from other sources – cheese, yoghurt, custard and milk on cereal/in cooking. They are 3 gorgeous and healthy kids. Amelia
  • My 1st was on formula after 3 weeks and it did phase her at all and then to cows milk at 12 months. I hadn’t heard of watering it down until now. My 2nd is bf and only had a expressed milk once from a bottle. I do worry about his transition to either formula or milk when the time comes so can’t wait to see what everyone else does- thanks! Pru
  • We went to goats milk as it is closer to our own milk. My bub reacted to the a1 protein in cows milk, she was bf until 21 months but started to have some milk in a cup from around 15 months. Misty
  • We did it after her first birthday. I did it slowly, 1/4 cows with 3/4 formula then after a few days 1/2, 1/2 extra. Probably over a 2 week period. She handled it really well. Might not have needed it but I did it just in case. Amanda
  • With my 1st lo for 3 days after her 1st birthday,  I mixed half and half formula and cows milk formula rang out after 4 days so straight to cows no issues at all she loved it. She was taking it from bottle for about two months then transition to just a cup. Petta
  • My exclusively b/f DD has never taken a bottle of EBM at all. So when I returned to work part-time, she was 11 months, she just went all day happily without feed. Her daycare mum always offers her cows milk in a sippy cup (didn’t bother with bottle so late in the game), she has some mouthfuls some days, none others, loves her yoghurt and has milk on her cereal. Will keep offering milk, she’s happy and I am sure will take it if hungry/want it. Will keep b/fing until she doesn’t want it anymore, mot my original plan but it’s what is best for her. Katie
  • At 12 months i gave a small sippy cup full of 1/2 water and 1/2 milk and then each week gradually used less water till no water was used, no problems. If your toddler gets the runs off it, try the lactose free milk or soy milk. Mitty
  • 13 months with my first. Bottle and sippy cup all milk, didn’t water it down and my daughter drank it straight away no issues. Jessica
  • DS was formula fed and refused bottles at 8.5 months, swapped him over to straight cows milk no problems at all. Got rid of bottles completely at 13 months. Rebecca
  • With my three eldest I switched to cows milk at 12 months after breast feeding and then formula with my youngest she is 15 months and was on the breast but had to change her to s26 gold AR & baby gaviscon at 4 months due to gastrophaegal reflux (spelling!??) then at 13 months we discovered she is also lactose intolerant so at 15 months she is still on s26 gold lactose free formula for a 6 month old as she is only 8kg now. I didn’t just decide this by myself lol it’s been many fortnightly trips at $130 each time to her paed to work out the best way for her to actually grow a little as she wasn’t putting on any weight due to the reflux. Lucy
  • With my ff dd I swapped completely to cow’s milk at 12mo as I didn’t realise I should gradually change. She had no problems with the transition. I continued with a bottle as it was easy to heat, it was a comfort thing for her & she was using a cup for other drinks. No issues at all! Having said that, it took ages for her to accept a cold drink of milk & to get rid of her heated bottle at night. In the end we just gave her no other option but a cold drink & a cup & she accepted it after a bit of protesting. Kathleen
  • With my fully bf DS I transitioned gradually at 12mo as I was also stopping bfing. Completely different! Not interested in bottles or cups of any kind & the temperature of milk didn’t make a difference. Despite drinking some water, his liquid & calcium intake was very low so we resorted to adding aktavite (choc flavour that is designed for bfing mums & fussy kids, has vitamins etc). After a month & a half of even trying that with little success, I’ve finally found that a solution. He likes slightly heated milk with aktavite, in a sippy cup but with the lid off & sometimes on as he drinks. He’s a picky little thing but I’m hoping to phase out the aktavite as his liquid intake improves.  Abby
  • I just remembered! My dd loved cow’s milk so much that she was having 3x 200ml for several months but it actually caused her to have anaemia. After using iron supplements for 3 months & cutting back her drinks – we decreased the size of one & gradually watered down the other by 10mls a day until she refused the drink completely – her levels went back to normal. Just something to keep in mind. Kathleen
  • Great question! My DS is 9 months & bf but I was thinking of weaning him off breastmilk around 12-15 months & was wondering what do when the time comes. I’ve seen ads on tv for toddler milk.. do ppl still give their bubs this as well as cows milk? Shianne
  • My DS was 13 months I just replaced formula bottles with cows milk n he was fine I no ppl say u should introduce slowly but I had been luring cows milk on his weetbix for his breakfast for few months b4, and in his mashed potatoes and stuff so knew he was fine with milk. Laura
  • My eldest started having small amounts in a sip cup whilst on formula then around 10mths just replaced formula totally, she was on a very good healthy diet though. My other was allergic to dairy so went on to soy, no problems with either. Lisa
  • With my first, I stopped BF at 7 1/2 months, stopped FF at 12 months, then fed watered down cows milk. Gradually added less water to it. Can’t really remember with my second, but would have been about the same. Now my third DD is nearly one & she wont have a bar of it!!! Stopped bf at about 9 months, now ff. I have tried to introduce water & juice this week & she won’t take it! She’d rather go without! Will persevere, might try giving her the juice/watered down milk in a sippy cup instead & see if that helps.  Fiona
  • My daughter was formula fed & went straight to cows mill at 12 months! No transition period, just a straight cross over! I continued to use a bottle first, then made the transition to a cup! Sarah
  • Leading up to my DDs 1st birthday, she was having 1 breastfeed a day and I would offer her a small amount of straight cows milk in her straw cup around lunch time. The week she turned 1 I just didn’t offer her the boob one night and she didn’t even seem to notice! She now has straight cows milk in a bottle or straw cup once or twice a day. Hoping to get rid of the bottle within the next couple of weeks 🙂 Michele
  • Mine was formula since birth, he never attached. ended up using goats cause of reflux. At 12 months switched to full cream milk in a sippy cup. Kathryn
  • Once they hit a year old and the last tin of formula has run out we switch to cows milk. We also remove dummies and bottles at 1 and use a sippy cup and then a normal cup once they’re ready for it. Peta


Im wanting to start my nearly 1yr old on cows milk but im confused how i should go about it. Some ppl say half milk half water, others say half formula half milk. Also how many mls of milk are other 1yr olds having and at what time? Tia

  • We just went straight to cows milk no messing about if your little one doesn’t take it then,maybe dilute or add formula but just try and see.  Allison
  •  when my son turned one I just went straight to cows milk in a sippy cup and he was fine but everyone is different.  Arnique
  •  I just started by putting it into his cereal and food. Then once 1year old in some of his bottles (I still give him formula too to ensure he gets vitamins)  Kylie
  •  my doc told me no need to do that to just swap straight over so i did and dd was fine she loved it. I heard to only mix it with water if they are not taking to it.  Nicole
  •  When my kids turned one I just swapped them straight over to full cream milk, had no problems.  Stephanie
  •  We just straight swapped. No issues.  Jessica
  •  We just swapped a bottle of formula for a bottle of cows milk. We started at 11.5 months with the lunch time bottle, than about a week later swapped the morning bottle and he had formula at night till this last tin ran out. Once we ran out of formula we switched him to 2 x 250ml bottles of cows milk (morning & night)  Nic
  •  just switched straight over, never had any issues.  Kristy
  •  I got told not to mix with water just to start pure milk in cereal as in farax which gradually they get used too that was from cafs, n just give half a bottle of fuk milk a day if need more give the child formula or breast n gradually increase to a full bottle a day or 2 wat ever child is needing but each to there own that’s wat I got told worked for me!  Rhiannon
  •  I started giving one bottle a day cows milk from ten months then by the time she was one all the bottles were cows milk. I left the bed time one til last.  Kelly
  •  at 10 months I was introducing it into foods such as with wheetbix and at meal times drink cows milk then at 12 months we just switched from formula to cows milk, she wouldn’t drink the formula after that. She loves milk and other dairy products.  Hannah
  •  My little girl was having half formula and half cows milk for about a week then straight cows milk, she didn’t even seem to notice the change. We had been putting cows milk in her farex for a week or so also to get her used to the change in taste. At 12 months she was only having 1 200ml bottle at night and had milk in a sippy cup for breakfast.  Kylie
  •  We went onto Toddler formula because my son is a poor eater, but he’s 2 yrs old now, and we want to change over to full cream milk. When we offered it to him straight, he rejected it, so we are going to mix it with formula over a period of time, gradually increasing the amount of milk and decreasing the formula. He has been on the Nan HA Gold, and all the “Golds” have a strong flavour because they contain Omega 3 oils, so its not as easy to change over to something as (relatively) bland as cow’s milk. We’re also concerned that he might have tummy trouble if we change over in one go.  Beth
  •  We see a nutritionist due to cows milk protein allergy and they said a 1 year old should be having no more than 600ml of milk (cow’s milk formula soy etc) a day plus other sources of dairy hope this helps.  Anita
  •  I also was not sure as my dd just turned 1 last week. I decided to just switch straight over by starting with morning bottle just in case a reaction but no worries she took it very well. Loves it.  Karen
  •  Formula and cows milk at separate times obviously.  Kylie
  •  I started my son around February / march …. Around the time he turned 1 I was giving him half milk half water …. Now he has like 210 mls milk 50 water …. Slowly up the amount of milk when you want to.  Nicci
  •  we diluted half milk half water because our son had a bit of trouble digesting straight milk.  Sammy
  •  I did the transition gradually. My lo drank 240ml so started with 60ml of milk and the rest formula. Then after that went down without a problem for a week or so, I added more milk and less formula. She had 3 bottles a day at that point. Now transitioned to full cows milk with no problems.  Sarah
  •  I found formula/ milk worked best. Started 1/4 milk 3/4 formula than continued on. But mine was already on formula so not sure if they on boob.  Taryn
  •  Ive recently been researching how much milk kids should have and came to the conclusion that 2 cups per day is good. Any more and their iron levels actually decrease (weird right?) any less and they don’t get enough vitamin D.  Cassie
  •  Straight milk is fine. We did that and never had a problem. We introduced once a day at first.  Jayme-Lee
  •  I went from formula to cows milk in stages, gave him cows milk 50/50 with water to start with. I kept his night time bottle as formula for a while.  Kristina


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