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  #1  
Old 10/25/11, 12:29 PM
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Breaking a cow to milk

I will now openly admit that I have almost lost my mind!! to make a long story short........I am now in the possession of a 5 year old full bred jersey cow along with her 3rd calf, approximately 3 weeks old. This is a BEAUTIFUL cow!! I can kindda rub her on the head when I am feeding her from a bucket. How in the blue-blazes do I break her to milk?? I need some voices of experience to chime in here??? I don't have a clue. My other cow was broke to milk when I got her. BTW.....I do not have a head gate
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  #2  
Old 10/25/11, 12:34 PM
 
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Build a stanchion immediately, they're not expensive if you build a simple one. Get her into the stanchion to get a halter on her if you need to. Visit familycow.proboards.com for tons of info about breaking a new cow to milk in their "tree of knowledge" section.

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  #3  
Old 10/25/11, 03:46 PM
 
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Location: Frankston, TX
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Find the pictures of topside's milk stand. Build one ASAP. Get her in there, halter, the do the same thing every day. Do it the same way. They like repetition. I can not stress this enough. In no time you may not even need to lock her head in the stand to milk.

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Old 10/25/11, 04:38 PM
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You may have to separate the cow and calf in order for her to let down her milk for you. Some cows will let down when they have a calf running with them and some will not.

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  #5  
Old 10/25/11, 07:39 PM
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Has this cow ever been milked before? If not it could be a rodeo. I second getting the stanchion set up. I feel eveyone that milks should have one, unless your cow is super tame and doesn`t care. And do you milk by hand or machine? Good luck. > Marc

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Old 10/25/11, 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted by springvalley View Post
Has this cow ever been milked before? If not it could be a rodeo. I second getting the stanchion set up. I feel eveyone that milks should have one, unless your cow is super tame and doesn`t care. And do you milk by hand or machine? Good luck. > Marc
Aaahhh.....No, the cow has NEVER been milked before. I was really blessed with my first cow....super tame and can milk her in the field. SHe is just a baby. And, I do milk by hand. I have a feeling I need more than luck.......all advise and PRAYERS are welcome!! Does anyone know where to find the pics of Topsides stanchion??
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  #7  
Old 10/25/11, 08:27 PM
 
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Location: Frankston, TX
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http://www.homesteadingtoday.com/sho...ght=milk+stand
Here is the link. My husband did not make the V. I just chained them to the top. I don't have to chain them any more. But if she does not have a halter get one on her somehow. Was she handled at all before?
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  #8  
Old 10/25/11, 10:01 PM
 
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How soon are you wanting to milk her. You can always do the flanking technique I described in a post earlier. If your interested pm me and I’ll walk you through it.No stanchion needed.

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  #9  
Old 10/26/11, 07:53 AM
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Thanks Janij,,,,Stephanie, keep in mind the stanchion in the link provided is not complete: Tops of posts need to be sawed off, multiple holes need to be drilled for different swing arm positions, another 4 x 4 needs to be ran down the center, feed trough installed and so on....This is the first one I built and have modified the design since then. I have built and sold these also, no complaints from the buyers. If you need a little help let me know by PM...Topside

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  #10  
Old 10/27/11, 12:20 AM
 
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I can't help but ask how a 5 year old Jersey avoided being milked. Was she a nurse cow or something? I assume her udder is quite full with just a calf?

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Old 10/27/11, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by DJ in WA View Post
I can't help but ask how a 5 year old Jersey avoided being milked. Was she a nurse cow or something? I assume her udder is quite full with just a calf?
I told ya it was a long story, but here goes......

My MIL bought an "older" jersey (who was supposedly bred at the time) from this guy down the road.....He said the old cow had came from a dairy barn, and they got rid of her 'cause she was not milking much....blah, blah,blah

The poor 'ole cow has the calf ......a full blooded jersey heifer. 6 weeks later 'ole cow dies during a lightening storm. MIL now is having to botttle feed new calf. This new calf grows and does fine. MIL decides she is gonna bred the heifer calf and try to milk her. Heifer is bred, has a calf, and MIL don't ever touch her. Hands hurt, no time, etc. Bull calf is sold, cow is eventually bred back again. She is definently gonna milk her "this time". Same deal. No time, back hurts, feet hurts, blah, blah, blah. The jersey is left in the field and bred back again. MIL decides she is no longer gonna fool with cattle. She has decided to lease her farm out. She sells her cattle off. She tells me, I can have the cow (along with her 3 week old bull calf), since I am milking now. . "She won't be NO trouble to break.....I used to pet her alot". Sure she did, when she was bottle feeding her 5 years ago. . Anyway, I now owe a BEAUTIFUL milk cow.......who ain't never been milked!!
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  #12  
Old 10/27/11, 01:48 PM
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I bought a 10 month old Jersey and really need to halter train her. But when she is eating she lets me play milk her as does my 7 month old half Jersey--that was born here.

A friend told me on the 10 month old to start touching her all over and get her used to me touching her, she doesn't mind me tugging at her now. At first she wouldn't even let me near her--watermelon did the trick.

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  #13  
Old 10/27/11, 07:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luv2farm View Post
I told ya it was a long story, but here goes......

My MIL bought an "older" jersey (who was supposedly bred at the time) from this guy down the road.....He said the old cow had came from a dairy barn, and they got rid of her 'cause she was not milking much....blah, blah,blah

The poor 'ole cow has the calf ......a full blooded jersey heifer. 6 weeks later 'ole cow dies during a lightening storm. MIL now is having to botttle feed new calf. This new calf grows and does fine. MIL decides she is gonna bred the heifer calf and try to milk her. Heifer is bred, has a calf, and MIL don't ever touch her. Hands hurt, no time, etc. Bull calf is sold, cow is eventually bred back again. She is definently gonna milk her "this time". Same deal. No time, back hurts, feet hurts, blah, blah, blah. The jersey is left in the field and bred back again. MIL decides she is no longer gonna fool with cattle. She has decided to lease her farm out. She sells her cattle off. She tells me, I can have the cow (along with her 3 week old bull calf), since I am milking now. . "She won't be NO trouble to break.....I used to pet her alot". Sure she did, when she was bottle feeding her 5 years ago. . Anyway, I now owe a BEAUTIFUL milk cow.......who ain't never been milked!!
I got my Dexter in August, she was 3.5 years old, bred, and had never really been handled. Took son and I about 2-3 days to get a halter on her, and then we knocked up a stanchion and wrangled her into it (we were able to grab hold of her horns over the fence and get the first halter on). Got a lead rope on her, and did some pole tying for a couple hours a day. She still wanted to fight, and hubby made the ultimate mistake one day and let her go when she was fighting him, so I bought a cow control halter, and she leads fairly well with it now. It's not much effort to get her into the stanchion, and I used the "glove on a stick" trick from Family Cow, only to find out the only place she doesn't like to be touched (in the stanchion) is her head/face. (Outside the stanchion, she constantly turns so she is facing you, so you can't touch anywhere else)

She calved late last night, we had to bring her and then the calf into the barn. She mostly willingly went with son to the barn while daughter and I stood behind trees in case she got crazy being taken from her calf, then grabbed the calf and took it to her in the barn. We put her in the stanchion, son made sure the baby was able to nurse, and then milked out about a pint of colostrum. She shifted around a bit, but she didn't fuss or raise a foot at him. We are very pleased with how far she has come since we got her, with minimal effort on our part (but lots and lots of horse cookies for bribes lol)
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  #14  
Old 10/27/11, 08:23 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luv2farm View Post
I told ya it was a long story, but here goes......

My MIL bought an "older" jersey (who was supposedly bred at the time) from this guy down the road.....He said the old cow had came from a dairy barn, and they got rid of her 'cause she was not milking much....blah, blah,blah

The poor 'ole cow has the calf ......a full blooded jersey heifer. 6 weeks later 'ole cow dies during a lightening storm. MIL now is having to botttle feed new calf. This new calf grows and does fine. MIL decides she is gonna bred the heifer calf and try to milk her. Heifer is bred, has a calf, and MIL don't ever touch her. Hands hurt, no time, etc. Bull calf is sold, cow is eventually bred back again. She is definently gonna milk her "this time". Same deal. No time, back hurts, feet hurts, blah, blah, blah. The jersey is left in the field and bred back again. MIL decides she is no longer gonna fool with cattle. She has decided to lease her farm out. She sells her cattle off. She tells me, I can have the cow (along with her 3 week old bull calf), since I am milking now. . "She won't be NO trouble to break.....I used to pet her alot". Sure she did, when she was bottle feeding her 5 years ago. . Anyway, I now owe a BEAUTIFUL milk cow.......who ain't never been milked!!
I see.

Alot of people worry about mastitis if they aren't getting milked out. Hopefully she didn't have a problem. Helps to be out in a relatively clean field.

Do all quarters seem to look okay?

A handful of sweet feed works wonders to get cows to come to you. Hopefully you have a place to corner her and get a halter on. Sooner or later you'll want her trained. Just tie her high to a stout post and let her pull till she gives in.
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Old 10/28/11, 01:41 PM
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Your cow may let you milk her without much fuss. I have two Jerseys that never lifted a leg when I first milked them. A lot depends on the personality of the cow. Once you have her in a stanchion, you can either tie her near leg back or use some other restraint if she kicks hard. She may just lift her leg a little and move back and forth at fist. Good luck with your cow.

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