Friday, January 7, 2011

Udder trouble

Molly, the Jersey milk cow
The cold, dry wind and warm, wet calf slobber have taken a toll on Molly's teats.  They've been looking a little chapped, but now her left front teat has a crack in it.  Cows are pretty tough, but Molly's been uncomfortable enough to kick Jake off when he tries to nurse.  (Not that she needs much of an excuse- she's in mourning over Nellie's departure.)  The result was one full udder. 

I shut the disgruntled parent in the barn, and, with the help of the milk stanchion, Jake and I milked her out.  He took the back teats and I worked the front two.  She protested at first, but in the end she was relieved.  I polished her off with a good coat of bag balm to sooth her sore teat against the wind; I'll repeat this morning and night until she adjusts her milk production down to just feeding Jake.  I haven't milked her now in several months.  It's good to know I still have the knack.

Bag Balm

Things you can't do with bag balm on your hands:
- lift heavy objects
- pet the dog
- brush the hair out of your face
- turn the doorknob to leave the barn

Things you can do with bag balm on your hands:
- ... I'll leave that for someone else's blog

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