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Got Milk? We Sure Do!

So, interestingly enough, goats don't actually need to get pregnant to produce milk - who knew? (I mean, I guess a lot of goat people know that, but we sure didn't!)


A couple of weeks ago, we noticed one side of Harriet's udders was getting a little larger. We figured at first it was just part of her development - she is a teenager, after all! As it continued to grow and neither the other side of her udder nor any of the other girls' udders were growing, we started to wonder if we should be worried. Stephen reached out to goat farmer friend Madison @ Clover Top Creamery and she told him all about precocious udders.


Precocious. Yeah, that sounds about right for Harriet!


Apparently, goat hormones can cause a doe to come into milk, even if she isn't pregnant or has had a kid. With Harriet being the queen of our herd, it seems kind of understandable this happened with her. In a nutshell, Madison's advice was, "Try milking her and see what happens!"


So...


It seems like all our milkstand training is paying off really well! Harriet wasn't sure what we were doing to her the first time or two, but she's pretty comfortable with milking now and she's rewarded with some extra grain and alfalfa.


She's even taken to standing with her knee out to give us better access - Thanks, Harriet!


And, I learned how to pasteurize milk! We are only pasteurizing the milk we use to drink, and later for cheese making. Any milk for soap can just be filtered and frozen for the time being.


Stay tuned for more posts about soap and cheese!


~J

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