Post by udder1mudder on Apr 7, 2010 14:00:40 GMT -5
Hi Kelsey, I just started milking for the first time nearly 8 months ago and am milking cow number 2. The first cow I milked was a seasoned cow, larger than a jersey. She had an amazing disposition for the family we purchased her from, but she seemed to know that I was inexperienced and that she could intimidate me. She was right! It didn't take me long to learn that some of the most important equipment I needed was to keep her from kicking me and bullying me. Kick bars and/or hobbles carried me through my months with her. Now I'm milking a first-time jersey that I trained from scratch. Those hobbles and kick bars have saved us both! A halter rope for the head to tie her head to a pole or ring is also recommended. You should have some string (I use the string that comes from our hay bales) to tie her tail to her leg. Getting a mud/poop-caked tail slapping you in the face is less than desirable! Many people on this website assisted me through a few days of tears with my jersey, who is now a dream for me!! She has become a wonderful milker.
Anyway, just some good rags to wash and dry her teats and udder really well, of course a bucket for the water, and a mixture of vinegar and a little soap is good disinfectant. The warmer the water, the better, as this will assist in her let-down of the milk. It also helps warm your hands And of course a bucket for the milk. I learned to have two buckets on hand - one sitting in the corner away from the cow, and one to milk into. Every few minutes I would empty my milk into the corner bucket. I've had too many experiences of having a foot land in my milk bucket without having emptied it into a different one. At least if she puts her foot into it you've salvaged most of your precious milk.
Hope this helps! You might also appreciate having a hot tub or heating pads to aid in your arms and wrists for the first couple of weeks - they can get pretty achy! You probably already know this, but make sure that your first two to three squirts of milk go to the ground as they can contaminate your entire milk batch. This is where most of the bacteria is. All in all, I hope this helps you. Blessings to you as you embark on your first Jersey ... wonderful cows!!!
A few other items you may want to get. I purchased most of mine from Hoegger Supply Company, they specialize in mostly goat supplies but are fine for cows too.
A stainless steel milking bucket, some have no lid and some have a lid with a small opening to squirt the milk into. I prefer the one with no lid since I am not profecient enough to hit the hole in the other one ;D.
A stainless steel milk strainer/filter that you can add milk filters into. I use a 5"across, 2" across the bottom, "mini strainer".
Milk filters for the strainer. purchase according to the strainer size you purchase.
Hoegger has 2 good Starter Kits that are a good price. They include the milking pail, the ss milk strainer and strainer filters.
And, gallon glass wide mouth jugs to store the milk in (of whatever size you want to use). Don't use plastic the milk won't keep as long. Wide mouth to scoop the cream off the top after it rises. I use a stainless steel ladel/scoop from Wal-Mart for scooping the cream off.
I am sure others have found other items better than the ones I have listed here - this is just what I use.
I also wipe her teats with antibacterial wipes after washing them with warm soapy water before I milk. Don't know if it actually helps but I figure every little bit can't hurt when it comes to cleanliness.
Also you will need to cool the milk down as quickly as you can once you get it strained/filtered. I put mine into the freezer for 2-3 hours until cooled well before putting it into the refrigerator. ;D ;D And yes, I have forgotten it and had frozen milk when I returned. So far my milk jugs have not burst from the freezing.
Hope some of this helps! Angela
Angela, Wife to James on Wolf Creek Farm Grandkids 4: Cloey, Gunner, Jesyca, Ava Claire Dogs: Jack/Rats: Fergie, Lucy& Minnie and blue/red heelers Katie, Reno, Poco Currently 2 purebred Jerseys, Bessie & heifer Honey Raise AQHA Quarter Horses & AKC Australian Cattle Dogs
Post by udder1mudder on Apr 8, 2010 14:41:06 GMT -5
Logically the cow, hands, bucket and maybe stool are the basics ... reading Little House on the Prairie, even the children were milking in the field with no issue!!! So why couldn't I have such a simple pleasurable experience? My first cow was ok for me once we became well acquainted, but then one day without warning I found her hoof scraping my jaw and landing on my shoulder with such a powerful wallop that I flew across the stall. It took a massage therapist and a chiropractor several weeks to undo the damage she caused. We later learned that before we had acquired her the bull had made her pregnant within only a month of her having calved. Perhaps that is why she sent me flying ... I think being pregnant within a month of having a baby would make me a bit edgy too ...?
Anyway, after that experience I'll likely never trust a cow with only the 3 or 4 basic items of necessity again.
Post by nightskyfarm on Apr 10, 2010 15:31:26 GMT -5
Always use a fresh PAPER towel to dry your cows teats. Never use the same towel on the next cow. We use paper napkins and buy them by the 500 count package, they are inexpensive and do the job. Your wash rag should be bleached prior to each milking and the udder wash I use is * 1 oz (2 T) of bleach (Clorox only) * one quart of water (use warm water and make this up each time) * a drop of blue Original Formula Dawn dish detergent (DO NOT use any other formula!) I leave the wash rag in the udder wash and do use it on cow #2 only because of the bleach that is in it.
Milk dry and keep your hands dry is the most important step.
Keeping the cow occupied during milking is the hardest thing, especially hand milking which even experienced milkers take longer than a machine, so the cow sometimes is done with her feed (grain) before you are done with milking. Then, I resort to putting some hay in front of her and get back to finishing. I actually milk by machine, but have hand milked plenty of animals.
You will need a good pail in the 5 gallon size. She should give you at least that each day. My Jersey fresh in Nov 09 is giving 6 gallons each day and the other one is giving 4 and she is still going up. You can find these pails on EBAY for a good price. You milk into your smaller pail and pour it into this bigger one as needed. When your cow is fresh, you will want and need a large pail to carry your milk.
I use the half gallon, wide mouth jars for milk containers. Easy to wash and easier to handle versus the one gallon ones. Buy the white plastic single lids instead of using the 2 piece canning ones.
You will need a halter and a place to tie your cow and you then will need a good set of knees. Me, I have the hardest time getting up and down.......especially as I get older.
You will also need a plastic bucket for the udder wash and in general, so get a couple.
And a good body brush and a horse curry for getting off the poop etc.
Definitely a good quality strainer and filter. In a pinch, Bounty towels and only Bounty towels can be used to strain milk and a sieve or small colander.
Hoegger can be expensive, so it pays to shop around - Register's Goat Supplies and Caprine Supply are 2 other places for dairy stuff. www.partsdeptonline.com also has a lot of dairy supplies.
The farmer puts in a long day, but the cheese-maker's day is endless.
A Grade A dairy for goats and cow, 47 dairy goats, a 7 year old Reg. Jersey Emily, due 6/14/12 bred to Eclipse, Annabelle Clover, a Jersey heifer - FRESH 8/22/11, 4 equines, Heritage Turkey, Peafowl, and assorted laying chickens.
I'm shopping for supplies to hand milk right now, and I'm kind of wondering... do you really need a 5 gallon pail to milk into? I mean, if she gives 5 gallons a day, that's for 2AD milking, right? And she doesn't give 5 gallons at each milking. Or is it that you only want the bucket half filled?
I'm also a little confused about the stainless steel buckets. Hambry sells stainless steel buckets for $190. On EBay, you can get "commercial grade" stainless steel seamless buckets for $21.
Post by oregonnewbie on Aug 10, 2010 20:08:33 GMT -5
I realize that this thread is a little old, but I just wanted to point to our blog post documenting a typical morning milking session, and the things we use in the process. If nothing else, it's an excuse to post a couple of pictures of our Jersey for you all to see.
We fashioned our routine off of the excellent advice from members of this forum. Hard to believe that it's only been a few months. We love our girl!
There IS a major difference in buckets. Some are thick, your cow can kick around the pasure all day and not damage; an d others are thin with a rolled edge. The thin ones dent very easily and the rolled edge collects all sorts of icky gunk, it is very hard to clean under that rolled edge. I got a few of the cheapies, that work fine for other things.
Bringing an old thread back - I'm having trouble finding 1 gallon glass jars - do any of you use 1/2 gallon jars instead? I can get them at the local Ace for $2 each, and I think they'll cool faster and fit in the refrigerator better.
Yeah and that brings up another thing not on the list of milking supplies - do most of you keep another refrigerator to hold all the milk plus your other refrigerator items? My 'fridge stays full most of the time, I can't imagine fitting in even 3 gallons of milk a day, let alone the 7 gals I read Jerseys average! I'm finding neighbors who will want some surplus milk, but frankly I don't think they'll make a dent at this point.
Proud momma to 2 great kids
Stephanie - Dexter herd queen; Howard - Angus bull calf; Lady Vivienne, Arthur, Eloise, Fuzzy, Holly , and Punkin- our fold of Scottish Highland cattle; 17 potbelly pigs; ?? chickens; 5 dairy goats (1 doe, her two boys and 2 wethers); 2 mini donkeys; 2 dogs; 2 cats; and 2 bunnies
Post by singingbullranch on Sept 29, 2013 18:30:40 GMT -5
Hi, we're trying to figure out the best and most economical way to milk our Dexter cow. She still has her calf on her, so we want to make sure whatever we use is ok for the calf too. We're seeing so much different information that it's hard to decide what to do. Natural, simple,non-poisonous and economical is what we need. Any suggestion?
ladybelle: I have a question if anyone can help out. I have to adult cows that keep nursing on each other. Can you suggest anything I can do to get them to stop doing it. Thank you
Sept 4, 2013 12:44:59 GMT -5
wyomama: ladybelle, post a thread in the Family Cow section. Weaning rings might work. They make permanent ones.
Sept 4, 2013 14:49:55 GMT -5
AJ & Denise: anyone there to chat we need a little advice
Sept 9, 2013 15:30:51 GMT -5
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