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Kalopa Mauka
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Bess kidded, with difficulty, in late March 2020. I worked with her a lot to fatten her up and get some production. By early summer she was fine, but I decided not to breed her this year. I bought 3 kids (donʻt ask)in November, so I needed her to produce so I could feed house and kids. I promised her she could retire as soon as Soleʻ kidded. Bess was giving about 6-8 cups a day. Soleʻ kidded Saturday, 2 days early and without letting me know.
Bess is now giving 10-12 cups, I hate to dry up with that much production. I am sure it will taper off soon.
My question - has her production increased because of hormones in the air? Or kids in the barn? My November babies are outside, but the December kids have barn access, so I donʻt think the kids have done it.
Has this happened to anyone?
 

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Kalopa Mauka
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103 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I will milk her until the milk tapers off. The reasons to stop 1) she is skinny again, 2) I am milking 3 other good producers and have another to kid in March. I cannot use all the milk I have now!
My hands are really tired and I am getting a bit of a tremor. I might be too old to keep this up!
 

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Kalopa Mauka
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103 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Try to dry her off then.
Of course you will have still milk her as needed.

If you can't do it try to find someone who can help you.
Hmm, I must have not phrased my question very well. I was just wondering about the hormone issue.
I am confused, though, by the "still milk her as needed". Do you mean when I need the milk? I never milk a goat after I have determined to dry her up. I have been doing it this way for 8 years this time. I got my first goats in 1968 and kept goats ʻtil the mid 70ʻs. I was able to start again after I retired. Dry up has always been waiting for low production, cutting off grain, and going cold turkey, never had a problem.
 

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Kalopa Mauka
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103 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It is best to milk a doe if she seems tight at least to warn off mastitis or balloon teats.
Sorry, I do not agree. I have never had an issue with mastitis, even when I watched one with milk squirting out the engourged teats. I have worked at a goat dairy and always when we dry up we milk them dry and never touch the teats again.....wait, that is not quite correct. We always feel the udder and teats at least once a day to check for any unexpected heat. When $$$ and time allow, we have used a dry-up infusion, but that does not change the procedure. Cold Turkey.
I know everyone does not agree with this, but for my goats and the goats at the dairy it is the procedure that works. Also, I really havenʻt dealt Boer does, I have a half Boer wether and my 3 mo old buck is half - I chose him because the part Boer kids are supposed to be easier to raise and easier to sell.
 

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I have to disagree with you as well. ;)

I believe that is asking for trouble, with no relief when the doe is in pain is a bit cruel.

There is risk for them to get mastitis or ballooned teats.
Not worth the risk, just my opinion.

If you have successfully dried up does without intervention, you have been very lucky and must have a very clean farm or ranch. ;)
 

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Kalopa Mauka
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103 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have to disagree with you as well. ;)

I believe that is asking for trouble, with no relief when the doe is in pain is a bit cruel.

There is risk for them to get mastitis or ballooned teats.
Not worth the risk, just my opinion.

If you have successfully dried up does without intervention, you have been very lucky and must have a very clean farm or ranch. ;)
The dairy I worked for milked 60 to 90 goats with no mastitis issues on dry up. They have been doing it that way for 20+ years. Iodine dip teats 2X day for 5 days. There is nice green pasture all year, the goats are rotated through the 3 divided pastures weekly. On my place over 8 years I have milked 5 or 6 each year and had no problems.

I agree that some does do probably have some pain when they fill up, but I have read more than one source that indicates the tight udder is the signal to stop producing.

I guess whatever works for us is what we should do.
 

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I know dairies do it all the time, but it’s not for me. Also, how much do dairies take into consideration the production of a doe? Legitimate question, I have never asked a dairy operator the question.
It seems they all dry up in the fall, when a doe is at her lowest production, and sometimes on dairy producer’s website they talk about the doe that refuses to dry up, so that indicates to me they aren’t necessarily drying every single doe cold turkey.
I had a CAE positive doe who was a fantastic doe that I wanted to get more kids out of to preserve her genetic line. I didn’t want to deal with the transmission risk through milk though, so attempted to dry her up at the peak of her lactation-I didn’t even try cold turkey, and she still got mastitis. Made me much more aware of the production of the doe as I’m trying to dry them up.
In your original post you said your doe’s production went up so you are being careful about drying her up and I would be too.
But I guess that wasn’t even your question, so how did we get here? LOL

I haven’t personally dealt with it, but I’ve heard it’s a common thing for does that are milking through to suddenly pick up in production when the does around them are kidding, so I would guess your doe did the same.
 

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Kalopa Mauka
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103 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I know dairies do it all the time, but it's not for me. Also, how much do dairies take into consideration the production of a doe? Legitimate question, I have never asked a dairy operator the question.
It seems they all dry up in the fall, when a doe is at her lowest production, and sometimes on dairy producer's website they talk about the doe that refuses to dry up, so that indicates to me they aren't necessarily drying every single doe cold turkey.
I had a CAE positive doe who was a fantastic doe that I wanted to get more kids out of to preserve her genetic line. I didn't want to deal with the transmission risk through milk though, so attempted to dry her up at the peak of her lactation-I didn't even try cold turkey, and she still got mastitis. Made me much more aware of the production of the doe as I'm trying to dry them up.
In your original post you said your doe's production went up so you are being careful about drying her up and I would be too.
But I guess that wasn't even your question, so how did we get here? LOL

I haven't personally dealt with it, but I've heard it's a common thing for does that are milking through to suddenly pick up in production when the does around them are kidding, so I would guess your doe did the same.
This dairy breeds year round, so there is always milk and babies to feed.They take does off the line based on production which they monitor twice a week. It works out that most of the does kid in the same month every year. We do not have cold weather, they use a hormone to induce ovulation off season. The bucks get the idea easily. Havenʻt had any complications with that, except maybe more 3s than 2s. The herd manager was a vet tech and I am sure that is an advantage.

I had one doe that was very difficult to milk, bucking & kicking. I tried a hobble, it dawned on me that I was milking as a hobby and did not need her milk. I think she was 2 months in, I quit her cold turkey and monitored her daily. The first couple of days there was milk squirting when she walked. I was worried, but she did fine. But there was probably luck involved with her.
 
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