Thursday, May 20, 2010

My new milking gig

This is Matilda's new milking stall. Don made it for me after my sweet gentle Matilda went on a nasty-tempered bender and wouldn't let me milk her. She would dance her hind quarters around and kick her back right leg with abandon, making milking now only frustrating but dangerous. No more!

She's tied at the head, with a feed box that has a bit of grain in it to give her incentive to go inside.

For the moment, I'm using old tires as "spacers" to keep her closer to my side.

My favorite part: a hobble on the leg that kicked.

We're still working on tweaks here and there, but for now this new stall makes milking 100% easier. I no longer have to dread milking. Once again it's the enjoyable chore I've always found it to be. Thanks, Don!

To Matilda's credit, she doesn't struggle while in the stall. She doesn't fight being tied at the head, nor does she argue with the hobble on her leg. Gee, it's almost as if...she knows she's defeated.



  1. They know! My AnnaBelle is as gentle as can be and very cooperative (most of the time.) She still has to be tied to the tree to keep her head still and the grain is the only reason she will go to the tree to be milked. All you have to do is show her the grain and tell her to *go* to her tree and she goes. (She listens better than the dogs do ;- )

    We tried a milking stachion, forget it. When it rains she is milked under the loafing shed and when its clear, she is tied to the tree and milked.

    The only problem milking her under the shed is that it is not her *normal* milking place and she gets a bit antsy (sp?) and ends up peeing every where! ;- (

    We learn though every day with her that ROUTINE is our best friend and hers too.

    Amanda <><
    Matthew 6:33
    mark 12:30

  2. Maybe to Matilda's credit? I suppose that Matilda could simply be behaving like an unruley child. Perhaps she just needs to feel the discomfort of not being milked. This sounds strange to me from what little I have seen and from my experiences watching my Grandmother do this. Those cows seemed relieved to be milked.But what do I know? Not much!

  3. She is kicking because her teats are sore. I can see that one is severly cracked. Use Bag Balm and she will not be as irritated with you

  4. Yes, one of her teats is cracked but the nasty streak started well after that crack appeared, believe it or not. Don't know what's gotten into that cow.

    I have a medicated bag balm I got from the dairy vet that I use on her teats. Poor thing, when we got her 1 1/2 yrs ago from a commercial dairy, her udder was a mess. Cracks, scabs, mastitis... that's why I'm amazed she's stayed as good-tempered as she has all this time, because she's been through hell with that udder.

    - Patrice