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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have a doe, her second kidding, and she has been bagging up 4 weeks before her due date. Forums and books sometimes say if the udder gets hard and shiny, it may be necessary to milk her out - does anyone have experience with this? Is it best to milk a little at a time only, just to take the pressure off? Or completely milk her out? I fear completely milking her out will only further stimulate milk production, while she should be devoting her resources to the final days of baby-formation.
 

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Welcome to the forum! Do not milk. Doe builds colostrum first. That is essential for health of the young. The colostrum puts needed bacteria and proteins into the GI tract of offspring.
 

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We have a doe, her second kidding, and she has been bagging up 4 weeks before her due date. Forums and books sometimes say if the udder gets hard and shiny, it may be necessary to milk her out - does anyone have experience with this? Is it best to milk a little at a time only, just to take the pressure off? Or completely milk her out? I fear completely milking her out will only further stimulate milk production, while she should be devoting her resources to the final days of baby-formation.
No do NOT milk her. She has precious colostrum that her kids will need the first few days.
 

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Welcome, glad you are here. :)

I agree, do not milk it out.

She should be kidding soon, if she is busting at the seems.
After she kids, you can relieve some pressure and milk her some, to make her more comfortable.
You can then save some colostrum and freeze it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
We've been hoping that she would be kidding soon, but now it's been 5 days since her udder is quite huge and no kids. It seems to have the hard, shiny look some resources say should be "milked off" if she's not due imminently. She is still 3 weeks away from her due date, and her breeding date could be off by a few days but not a few weeks as she was separate from the buck. I'm concerned she may develop mastitis before she kids, which would complicate her kids feeding, right? And doesn't she need room in her udder to produce colostrum? She's so full and so far away from due date, with no other signs of kidding coming soon (ligaments, hollows, right side shifting, swollen vulva) I'm really having trouble finding anyone who has described what they've actually done in this situation.
 

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Sorry, never been there.
 

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No experience but I would be concerned about milking off the colostrum. It's only produced for about three days in people. There is colostrum replacement available if you feel like you have no other option but to milk her. Oxytocin is the hormone of labor and delivery, bonding, and milk production. Because I found this discussion to be very interesting, I did a little independent research to refresh my memory and found this valuable information for future use. This is copied and pasted from Quizlet.com Physiology of the Mammary Gland: Milk Production and Colostrum

How can we increase oxytocin to help expel a stuck baby?
rub on mammary glands

For those of you who are not familiar with Quizlet, it's a website students use to study for exams. This particular set of questions and answers appears to be for veterinary med students. I like to check myself sometimes before offering my opinion even when it's not my professional opinion. My bottom line here is; milk production is only a part of a very delicate dance orchestrated by mother nature. In my very limited personal experience with a doe bagging up early, it was only a week or so. Immediately after kidding the doe acted very uncomfortable and kept pawing at her udder on the left side. The new kids would hit her and lick at her teats but not latch on, just lick or get a little mouthful before she started pawing again. I so wanted to do something aggressive but managed to contain myself. Milked just enough from both sides to determine there was no inflammation and the milk looked normal. Kids got the hang of it and thriving now at 2 weeks old.
 

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I'll be the dissenting opinion. I'd milk her out. She'll be far more comfortable, the udder will be protected from blow out, and she WILL make more colostrum as she kids.

She won't completely fill back up right away so this is probably the only time you'll need to do this.
 

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I'll be the dissenting opinion. I'd milk her out. She'll be far more comfortable, the udder will be protected from blow out, and she WILL make more colostrum as she kids.

She won't completely fill back up right away so this is probably the only time you'll need to do this.
Ah ha. So it seems. Colostrum is made during the last few days of pregnancy AND the first 24 hours after birth. I love a good discussion. Stimulates critical thinking and provides an environment for learning new things. :great:
 

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I'll be the dissenting opinion. I'd milk her out. She'll be far more comfortable, the udder will be protected from blow out, and she WILL make more colostrum as she kids.

She won't completely fill back up right away so this is probably the only time you'll need to do this.
Well you know I will defer. The closest I have been to kidding is on TGS.lol
I did not know when colostrum was actually produced. Thank you @mariarose !
@Treva Brodt ,yes the discussions are extremely beneficial to those of us who are still on the bottom of the goat knowledge tree.
 

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I'm pretty far down the rung myself. Two years ago my husband begged to bring home a runt from his friends herd to bottle feed. The following spring he gifted us with an orphan and a wether so they wouldn't be lonely (ha ha). Then we acquired a couple of acres and it was my husband's idea that we find some does and raise a few to sell. So they all got together and bred like bunnies and now I read a few threads a day to survive. I'm invested now and I want to have content and healthy animals. You all are my go to for just about everything from nutritional needs and shelter to responsible breeding. We can access the Merck Manual for Veterinarians on line, that's some scary stuff right there. I have also pondered and poured over peer reviewed research articles published by universities and extension agents. This is by far the best cross section of owners and breeders I've found so far. Real people, real feelings, real problems and reasonable answers. My little buddies are not n=2 subjects.
 

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Super Tanker Does do produce a lot of milk. When one of my does got super full like that the vet said not to milk her. The old Ranch Manager said to milk her out half way. I did that every 3 days or so. She was so tight, after one squeeze she streamed milk for a good 3 minutes on her own. One day she would not let me touch her udder. She kidded triplets the next day.
 

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Not quite two years for us. A rescued bottle baby, Bonne, first. She will be two in April. In August, our second goat, Sinatra will be two. We bought him from someone who won him in a raffle. 2018 we added seven more pet NDs, four wethers and three doelings.
This afternoon a female four day old lamb.
 
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We have a doe, her second kidding, and she has been bagging up 4 weeks before her due date. Forums and books sometimes say if the udder gets hard and shiny, it may be necessary to milk her out - does anyone have experience with this? Is it best to milk a little at a time only, just to take the pressure off? Or completely milk her out? I fear completely milking her out will only further stimulate milk production, while she should be devoting her resources to the final days of baby-formation.
Are you sure that she has not dropped kids in a hidin place and you just have not seen them?
 

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Super Tanker Does do produce a lot of milk. When one of my does got super full like that the vet said not to milk her. The old Ranch Manager said to milk her out half way. I did that every 3 days or so. She was so tight, after one squeeze she streamed milk for a good 3 minutes on her own. One day she would not let me touch her udder. She kidded triplets the next day.
Wow, on streaming!
Amazing about stopping you before kidding.
 
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