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Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Milking woes

Have you ever watched someone milk a goat?  It looks terribly simple. I have been told it is different from how you milk a cow but I have nothing to compare it to. I can, however, tell you that it is NOT as easy as it looks.

Photo for cuteness. They sleep *under* the bench we made for them. 

When Aurora and Millie first arrived, I decided to let them get used to their surroundings and not milk for a couple days. By day 2 or 3, they were adapting well and I knew I had to begin. 

This is Auroras first baby, which means that, other than the 2-3 times her previous owner milked her, she has never been milked. 

This is my first goat experience, which means that I have never milked an animal. Ever. 

I would like to give you first goat owners a piece of advice. If you're new to goats, and it is at all possible - get a second or third year freshener. Being a newbie with a newbie is HARD. 

Here is another piece of advice. Get or build a milk stand. Maybe you'll get a dream of a goat, who stands still and just lets you do your thing. But I doubt it.  So, Sunday evening hubby and I set out to make a stand. 
Here Aurora is already done and I have unlatched her, she is just looking for more. 

It turned out great and it definitely helps keep her in place. It does not stop her from kicking the bucket across the yard, or trying to lay down so I cannot access her udder, or squeezing her legs together. And she does all these things. 

Have mercy. I keep trying to tell myself that we are both new and have only been together for a little over a week. I need to show her and myself some grace. This morning I prepared everything, put on some doTERRA Serenity essential oils and went out. It went better. She still kicked the bucket, squatted, squeezed her legs together, and made it impossible. BUT!  I am getting the hang of the milking motion, was a lot calmer, and I am hopeful we are turning a corner. A positive corner. 
Please.