Milking the Goats: A Photo Essay On Dairy Goat Care at Milking Time
I've shown you how to make some cheeses (and intend to show you more eventually).
I've also shared with you my matriarch goat Morgana's story.
It's time to show you a bit more of the goat world, and bring you into the milk room. This is a photo essay showing how my dad, "Mr. James", goes about his twice-daily milkings.
Each of his goats, whether nice or naughty, sweet or sour, is like a pet to him, and many of them respond in kind. It is difficult for him to get away for any kind of vacation, as his goats prefer his company over anyone else's, and go on strike, even refusing to come in the milk room, if anyone else tries to take care of them.
With that in mind, here's the tour.
The Waiting Room
The Milking Process
Hugs, Kisses, and Tricks
Feeding the Babies
The Matriarch Herself
Caring For the Milk
Milking Times - How Long Does It Take to Milk a Goat?
That's it. At the time these pictures were taken (fall 2009), Mr. James had several does milking. The whole process could take well over an hour.
On average, each doe takes about five minutes to actually milk out with a machine. Hand milking can take longer - say, 7 to 15 minutes apiece, depending on udder conformation and the personality of the goat (how skittish is she?).
Having goats has turned into a labor of love for Mr. James...as it does for many goat owners. Goats are a bit like dogs in their personalities, and usually like the humans in their lives very much.
You get more than milk from a dairy goat...you get love and laughs, too.