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Discussion Starter #1
I brought home my first goat yesterday morning. She is absolutely amazing. I've milked her 3 times and she is so tolerant of my novice attempts at milking. I don't have a milking stand yet (building this week) but she stands calmly tied against a fence for me. She even turns her neck around and lays her head on my shoulder as I milk. How adorable is that? She was recommend by her breeder based on my experience level and it's a perfect match. Dollie is a 2 1/2 year old Snubian (mostly Nubian).

Here's the down side. Her milk tastes goaty :( Last night I didn't drink any milk. I hate to say it but I threw it away. I wasn't confident with my milking skills and I'm still getting used to the idea of milk from the tap. I had some of this mornings milk and noticed the off taste right away.

Here are my guesses of what's going on.
1) She was housed next to a buck when I got her. She was also bred a few weeks ago. He was in a smaller pen inside the larger doe inclosure.
2) I forgot to strip the milk from one teat. So it went right into the milking bucket. Yuck.
3) Milk was not cooled fast enough. It was about 30 degrees outside but sat on my counter inside for about 20 minutes. While I was figuring out how to strain it.
4) Diet change. She's now on alfalfa pellets and a different grain mix (Goat Chow). There is also access to some weeds that I've seen her munching.

What do you think? If it is because of the buck how long will that take to go away?

Thanks in advance.
 

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well, I am not going to be able to help much because I do not milk my goats, BUT I do know that
1. did you wash your hands well and wash her bag before you started to milk her?

2. What did they feed her? If she is fed a good grain and good hay it should be good milk.

I know someone that just lets their goats graze and does not feed the best of the hay, and that milk is NASTY. No way would I ever drink that stuff, then I have had milk from clean barns, good feed and it is very good.

I am sure I missed it somewhere, but is she the only goat you have?
 

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I think that the fast cool down is key in getting good tasting milk. I freeze my jar that I milk into, and have it on ice right away. Some milk onto frozen "cool packs" in their milk bucket, and ice it down right away. I would try to make cooling the priority, and then strain the milk. All goats milk can taste different... but it sure sounds like you have a very sweet doe, even if her milk isn't sweet ... (it should be good for goat cheese!)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Both my hands and her udder were washed. But I only used warm water for her.

We also purchased a 3 month old Nubian from the same breeder. They get along prettywell. The baby seems to be settling in faster then the doe.
 

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Did you change anything in her diet (grain, hay)?
When I bought a new doe for the first week her milk didn't taste sweet. I think it was mostly a new environment which may have stressed her out (changing the milk).
From a week on the milk was tasting really sweet. She is also the only goat my family will drink the milk from (so they look for a "G" for Ginger on the jar).

It could be also that she is eating a weed that is affecting the milk or a different type of hay.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
It may have been not cooling fast enough. I took this advice and chilled a jar. Strained it as it went in. And had the jar in a bucket of ice. Last nights milk tasted much better. Just like milk should. This mornings will be the tie breaker. I'll see how it tastes before making other changes.
 

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Good sanitary measures in milk equipment and cooling milk very quickly is the key to good tasting milk.Have all your equipment cleaned very well and use alittle bleach.Make sure your hands are clean and you can wash her teats and udder with baby wipes (I drizzle alcohol on the wipes)
You need to cool that milk as fast as you can and also strain it quickly. We strain milk and put it in the freezer with lids off to cool.
Only other thing is some goats can produce funky tasting milk.We had a nubian that did.Good luck!
 

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I suspect that you were just not cooling it quick enough. I just started milking my first goat last fall, and even when I would put the milk directly into the freezer after straining it, I was getting a bit of a goaty taste. Now I put an empty jar directly into a small bucket of ice, bring it with me to the barn, and strain the milk right into that after milking. When I get to the house I add water to the bucket and let the jar of milk sit in the ice bath until fully chilled before putting it in the refrigerator. The milk is delicious! Sanitation is also important - if your equipment is not properly cleaned and sanitized, your milk will also get a goaty flavor. I also use a little bit of bleach to sanitize my milking things, and it works very well.

I hope that the ice bucket worked again for you this morning! And congrats on your new goat - she sounds like such a gem!
 

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I think some goat milk just tastes yucky! I have one that is so gross! However, some of my others have terrific milk. Who knows why. Like you, I was very careful about sanitary measures and cooling fast.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I read that genetics play a key factor as well. Like you said some just taste bad. Fingers crossed that's not my gal. She will be welcome as a pet but I was really hoping for fresh milk.
To be honest I didn't try her milk directly before we bought her. Shame on me. The breeder pools the milk from her 8-10 does. I only tired the pooled milk. It was fresh and tasted fine.
Dollie put her foot in the bucket this morning :( Spilled the chilled jar a little and flipped my strainer into the dirt. This happened first thing. The idea of walking back up to the house, cleaning all supplies again, and walking back out to milk in the dark when its 30 degrees out was too much for me. I just milked her out and the animals got the milk. I'll have to wait till this evening for another taste.
 

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:hug: We have all had those days..more then once.Frustrates the snot out of ya when they do that :veryangry: I now milk with a machine and don't have those issues anymore thank the lord! Milk is to precious to spill any!
 

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I milk the first doe into the bucket which is in a.pan of ice water. The second is milked into a stainless steel cup then poured in bucket. I bring the milk inside to strain into frozen jars. I wash all my equipment in the dishwasher in extra hot water. I have a small herd dairy permit and have passed all my inspections with flying colors. ice water works best to cool. I tried just ice and ice packs but ice water cooled faster.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
After several more adventures in milking I have decided her milk tastes great. I'm chalking up that first day to inexperience and improper handling.
 

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Hobbyfarmer said:
After several more adventures in milking I have decided her milk tastes great. I'm chalking up that first day to inexperience and improper handling.
You'll get the hang of it! Like others have said (aside from cleaning her off & straining milk) is milk needs to be chilled immediatly.
I put my glass jars in the freezer before I go out, if its warm out I even freeze the bucket before milking.
After straining into glass jars it goes back in freezer for a good hour.
 

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Glad you got it going well. For the future, there is a lactation cycle and the milk changes as it gets later in the cycle. I have three that have been milking since February, and two since May, I pool their milk, and I can't make chevre anymore that isn't goaty. And the whey doesn't want to come out. It is too late in the lactation cycle for hard cheese. It make really great kefir, though. They are getting ready to dry up, I hope. I'm really tired of milking them. I ordered a milking machine this week, so maybe next year I won't feel this way about it. But four of them are bred and deserve a break anyway. I'm going to try to milk the other one through the winter.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
That's great info Lisa. I had never heard that before. Dollie freshened in early March. So she's been lactating for 9 months. We are getting about 1 1/4 quarts per milking twice a day. I think that's okay for a Nubian this far after freshening especially in a new home with the weather getting colder. I was planning on milking her thru Jan/Feb then drying her off a few months before kidding (Due April 10th if she took).

I have never tried making cheese but I'm excited to get started. In fact my order just shipped from New England Cheese Making Supply. Should be here today or tomorrow :leap: My husband loves Kefir so we got those cultures as well. Hope your milking machine works out for you. Which one did you get?
 
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