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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Another newbie concern here,
as you all may know we happened upon a little doe in milk (since we werent prepared, thought to just dry her off, but who knew, the 10yr old has been getting up at 5:45-6am every day just to milk her before school!!!!)-- all we are doing so far is giving the milk to our Grt pyr/ anatolian puppy (he needs it) but... had a question, can we just milk indefinitely? she is doing about a half gallon a day, I know that isnt a whole lot but she was seriously underfed at her last home(bottom of the herd order and not getting to eat)... we are giving grain, free choice hay, and she gets out to browse at least 6- 8 hours a day....
Wasnt really sure about this whole milking thing....(child is not going to be keen on drying her off....).....
Info on doe-- she is an Oberhasli, born Feb 13, 2012 and freshened this past June with twins....
 

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I wouldn't personally. One of the members had a pygmy stay in milk for 26 months. Production will go way down after 10-12 months, and I would imagine it's hard on their body to be in milk for years as well.
 

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~Crazy Goat Lady~
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Maybe only breed every other year and milk through every other year... But I don't have any experience with that so I'm not much help... Sorry :(
 

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You can, and it's easier on the body than you think. Heavier production lines sometimes refuse to dry off at all and milk for years and years. Each kidding is a new lactation, they don't just carry over either. It's good to give her a break prior to kidding to prepare to put weight on and prepare proper energy storage, but people are really pushing dairy producers to try to carry over if possible. So long as she's holding healthy condition, go for it!
 

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Look for me in the barn...
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I have a doe that I milked through last year - so she's been fresh and milking since April 2012. She gave a steady gallon per day until the natural lactation curve meant she dropped to half a gallon per day around October '12. At that time we switched to milking just once a day, and we've been doing that since. During the winter she dropped to about 6 cups a day, but came back up to a half-gallon in the spring. I think if we'd went back to twice a day milking, she'd have come up to full production again, but we just stayed with once a day. She's in great condition still. I do plan on breeding her this fall though, and I'll probably dry her off soon after she's bred to give her a longer break.
 

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You can, and it's easier on the body than you think. Heavier production lines sometimes refuse to dry off at all and milk for years and years. Each kidding is a new lactation, they don't just carry over either. It's good to give her a break prior to kidding to prepare to put weight on and prepare proper energy storage, but people are really pushing dairy producers to try to carry over if possible. So long as she's holding healthy condition, go for it!
So, could you technically milk forever? That is interesting.
 

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Dave (TDG Farms) S.E. Washington State
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With the right goat and the right care, you could indeed milk a goat through out her life. BUT there are a few things to watch out for. Because she is milking constantly, you want a high protein / high calcium diet. Typically a dairy quality alfalfa can cover this but you would also want a great mineral mix as well. 90 ppm+ on the selenium if you are in a low level area, 2000 ppm+ on the copper and a good spread of vitamins would also be needed. You shouldny have to worry to much about the does udder holding up as after the first year or so her production should lessen a bit. Now with that being said, I dont know of anyone who has milked a doe longer then a few years without a break, but it is very possible.
 

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Very interesting...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
We have only had her 2 weeks but the vet said you see how her coat is coming in all shiny *they are getting super spoiled with free access to hay and browse, sweet goat ration, cobb, loose minerals, a selenium cattle block and they all got BoSe shots on pickup..... we will see.... I am guess that milking her will be a whole lot less fun at 15 degrees in the snow...so maybe she will get to dry her midwinter....
 
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