When I was looking thru the farmers classifieds I kept seeing the term "springing heifers" Can you define this for me? I know a heifer is a female cow, that usually has not yet calved yet, or is a first timer. But I dont know what springing is!
Daisy the cow Cooter the bull calf 5 horses 1 pony 2 mini donkeys 2 chocolate labs 1 english bull dog puppy 11 barn cats
Our cow was a "springing heifer" when we got her and she has been very easy to train, we don't even have a stanchion, just a chain and a wall! Go visit the ones you're interested in and spend some time scratching them, see how they react. Some cows like people, that's one you want, and some are, well, just crazy!
Thea mom to Parker and Owen, wife to Devin Co-builder of hand-made house, caretaker of 7 sheep (and growing!) 12 heritage chickens, and cats Mona, Winnie and Tansy
Mona was super easy to train...I got her as a springing heifer (our guy actually called her a "springer heifer") I got her used to coming in to the stanchion for treats and brushing for the time until she calved (didn't have a due date) and got her used to being rubbed all over. She adjusted really well. I was worried since I heard all these "rodeo" stories about first time calver's being milked...I think personality and prep work ahead really helps.
I don't have a stanchion either, just a chain. My Fiolka was underage to be pregnant when I got her, but everytime I was around her I would pat her udder with my hand to get her used to the contact the first few times she [very mildly] retracted but after that she was OK with it. She was no problem. I like the advice above about visiting the cows to see who is friendly or not.
Dan Jake & Fiolka Registered Heritage BreedMini-Jerseys; Camelia, their heiffer calf; Sammi & Rosie registered, heritage Tamworth pigs; Grazyna - Nubian doe Muscovy ducks, chickens, Toulouse & Embden Geese
I was one of the people with the rodeo heifer. I had had her for a year before she calved and she was used to being touched and brushed. Unfortunately this did not help when she gave birth and then was milked the first time. She has serious mood swings when she comes into heat and when she calved. We know this now and are prepared for it. I would not try a first calf heifer again unless I had a stanchion and a "kick stop". The "kick stop" saved us. My girl is now just the best. She is a pleasure to milk. I would still suggest that a person new to milking get an "experienced" cow and learn from her. I would definitely go and look at the cows for sale and see what their personalities are before buying one. Janet
This book is intended as an inspirational manual for keeping a family milk cow. A lifetime of practical experience has been bound into one volume. Practical advice for the everyday and procedures for cow emergencies. Plus, answers to FAQ's like, 'Should you get a cow?' and 'How Much Space do I need?'