Braunvieh (German: "brown cattle") is a breed of cattle originating from Switzerland. Braunvieh cattle imported to the United States in the 19th century were the origin of the modern (American) Brown Swiss cattle breed. Since the 1960s Brown Swiss cattle have been crossed back into the Braunvieh stock of Europe. Original Swiss Braunvieh were imported directly from Switzerland in 1983, for the first time since 1880, by Harlan Doeschot of Firth, Nebraska, who had been in Switzerland looking for Simmental cattle to import and was greatly impressed by the uniformity and reproduction efficiency of Braunvieh. They are known for their excellent milking abilities and meat quality. They are also very docile and easy to work with.
Braunvieh come in many shades of brown, with the most common being a mousy brown. They can be lighter or darker and always have a lighter colored ring around their nose. This characteristic enables the Braunvieh to be easily distinguishable when looking at other breeds of cattle. It should never be confused with the Gelbvieh.