Raising Dairy Cows, Part III

Our resident veterinarian presents the third and final installment of his series on raising dairy cows.

| November/December 1981

  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - 3 happy cow
    Consistency in your milking routine is key to Bossie's comfort, and one of the keys to raising dairy cows.
    PHOTO: RANDY KIDD
  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - 4 mastitis test
    To perform the mastitis test, collect a stream of milk from each teat into a separate cup of the collector device.
    RANDY KIDD
  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - 1 cleaning udder
    Begin the milking procedure with a thorough cleaning of the cow's udder.
    RANDY KIDD
  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - 2 udder disinfectant
    Dipping each teat in disinfectant after milking will help prevent infection by microorganisms.
    RANDY KIDD
  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - mastitis test cups
    Blue dye helps make evidence of evidence of mastitis visible.
    RANDY KIDD

  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - 3 happy cow
  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - 4 mastitis test
  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - 1 cleaning udder
  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - 2 udder disinfectant
  • 072 raising dairy cows part 3 - mastitis test cups

In "Raising Dairy Cows, Part I," and "Raising Dairy Cows, Part II," I presented "ten commandments" to help you raise your own healthy backyard dairy cow. And now that the basic methods of feeding and caring for of Bossie have been explained, it's time to turn our attention to the task of safeguarding the "liquid assets" produced by the bovine boarder.

Cleanliness Is the Key

To insure that your homegrown dairy products are tasty and safe to eat and drink, you should follow several simple principles of milk handling. The first (and most important) rule is to make certain the liquid doesn't become contaminated after it leaves the mammary gland. The best way to assure this is to keep the milking equipment and building scrupulously clean.

[1] Maintain a spotless milking area. You might want to paint the enclosure white, so you'll be better able to see—and eliminate—fly specks or spots of fecal matter.

[2] Keep strong odors out of the milking and milk storage areas.



[3] Use only sanitized pans, strainers, and bottles.

[4] Don't give your dairy animal onions, silage, cabbage, moldy grains and hay, or any other feed that can impart an "off" flavor to the milk.






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