Within the last 3 days Carly has become more adverse to being milked. Her 7 weeks old calf has scours, and she's was recently in heat. Would those two things cause this? I'm going to stop trying to milk her because it's just making her more crazy. I guess her production will go down or the calf will take the rest. Maybe she want's more milk for the calf? I don't know.
Heat cycle, change in routine, the weather....many things can make her grumpy enough to kick.
Check her physical being--sores, wounds, mastitis, etc first. Then do everything possible to keep the routine the same day in and day out. Third, restrain the offending hoof! There is no need to get kicked or swiped at! The rope around the belly, the kick stop bar, hobbles, there are many different humane and gentle ways of reminding your cow that you are boss and that milking is an expectation. If you give in and stop milking her you run the risk of mastitis, severe drop in production, having a cow that knows she can bully you, and losing the daily inspection and bonding time with her. Think of your cow like a petulant teenager--she needs to know the boundaries that you have set (don't let her set them), and she needs to know these boundaries will not change, they actually find comfort and solace in routine. You can do it! Wishing you the best!
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Yep, she's training you to what she wants. I don't ask much of the cow, but she is here for a job to do. My milk, and milk for a calf. She doesn't want to give ME the milk, then I bottlefeed the calf until mama cow gets the picture.
I may really like/love my cow, but she's still got a job to do.... Janene
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Post by pipergrey93 on Jan 14, 2011 22:05:56 GMT -5
Everything Liz and janene said. Also, keep in mind that if you stop milking and she gets mastitis, you will have to milk her out and she will be very sore so the kicking will even be a bigger issue.
Look in the 'Tree of Knowledge' section. I know there are some really good, humane and effective ways to shut the kicking down. And it hasn't been too long since there was an excellent thread on just this issue. Maybe someone can remember where it was and pull it up for you....Sandy
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When she kicks, I just tie her so she can't eat the alfalfa for a while and then see if she understands the consequences of her actions.
I don't think that to tie her up after the fact away from her food is going to help anything. I doubt very seriously she will understand that you are tying her up because she kicked at you. Any consequence has to be immediate, just as it would be if you were training a dog. You can't wait five minutes and then expect a dog to know why you are disciplining them. The discipline has to be immediate.
Personally, we don't "punish" kickers. We may use a kick stop when we absolutely have to, tie their leg, etc. We us an immediate, stern, loud voice " ___________ (insert cows name) no kicking." Depending on the cow, a firm slap to the hip or leg to let them know that it's not ok. I say depending on the cow because we are currently dealing with a cow that kicks who is very nervous. She is kicking more out of fear than agression. We don't physically do anything other than force her leg back down if we happen to catch it mid air. Otherwise, she kicks, we sternly tell her "no" and the milker goes back on. Once she realizes we are not giving up, she quits kicking. She might not kick again for the next three milkings but then something sets her off and she does it again.
I need to bring our cow in and use the glove on a stick with her. I think it would be a great training tool for her and I think your cow would benefit from this as well. Unfortunately, the cow we are dealing with right now doesn't come in voluntarily and when my husband is here to help me, he wants to get the milking done and get inside. So, I have not had a chance to work with her with the glove on a stick.
The theory behind putting the glove on a stick and touching the udder is that they can kick all they want but you don't give up until they stop kicking. Then they learn that you are going to be touching their udder and it's useless to kick.
Sounds like your cow has learned that by kicking, she can get her way. You will have to show her that you will get your way.
Hang in there. I feel for you.
We have five heifers to train to milk this spring/summer. Along with the cow we are currently working with, I am thinking we are going to get kicked a lot!
By way of a rather esoteric response, check out the thread: does your cow know she's loved.
I've been training a first time freshener to milk these last three weeks. Today I sat in the pasture with the cows for about an hour. I was just with them. I handed out some treats, gave a scratch here and there, let the baby sniff all over me (oh so cute!) All was calm, all was bright. And I walked away thinking how important it is to just put time in with them, become known and familiar in their world not just the parlor, and be seen as a positive force in their life.
I just say ump/hump in a loud gruff voice and block the leg with my arm, even for shuffeling the feet they get the ump/hump , and they know what it means , it works for me ( I only use it for feet when I am milking ) Suzanne
Last Edit: Jan 25, 2011 11:48:16 GMT -5 by suzorse
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Sounds like she is trying to hold up on you;keeping the milk for the calf.You could try bringing in the calf to stand near her & she will probably settle down for you.This works for my cow.Build a little pen near your milking area to let the calf in .
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