Due to a number of events out of my control and the constant increase of my writing work for the CLAA, I was forced to stop milking one of our cows (Rebecca) in mid-August. I sent her out to pasture and planned to see her again next year. However, things suddenly calmed down for me less than 2 months later and I asked, “Hey, can I get her milking again?” After all, she should be milking for another 5 months.
Fortunately, she had been with her calf in the pasture and the calf began nursing. So, the calf kept Rebecca in milk during the time I wasn’t milking her. I went out three days ago and prepped her for milking. I went through the entire process as normal, gave her feed, cleaned her teats, massaged her udders and took just a few draws from each teat. The milk looked fine, but there was hardly any there. She was largely dried up.
That evening, I brought her back in for milking and milked her. She gave us one full gallon. The next day she was up to a gallon and a half. Yesterday she gave the same and today looks fuller than yesterday. Knowing we’re beyond her 70-day mark, I’d be very happy with 2 gallons per day…and I think we might get there. Nevertheless, it is possible to take a break from milking and resume. Then again, we’re not milking for money, but for milk.