Lady Astor has begun a very naughty habit while she is milking – she lifts her tail and PEES – Gallons – all over the clean milking shed floor. So to adjust this unacceptable behaviour I have to train her to pee BEFORE she comes into the milking shed.
Up until recently I have had to go down to the fields to bring them in for milking and they pee and poo on the walk up through the fields but now they are feeling the routine and are standing at the barn door ready to come in at milking time so we have skipped a step.
So we are undergoing a period of adjustment: after I have milked Aunty Del (who has never made a mess during milking) and fed the calf I go through to the waiting room and (if there has been no waterfall sound effects from over that side) I brush Lady until she finally pees, then as a reward I immediately open the milking shed door and let her in to have her treats while I milk her. For a while this took a very long time, both she and I are pretty pig headed but in the end I win because I am the human and she is the cow. And now she is getting the idea. Thank goodness. Cows pee GALLONS at a time. The problem is that with some cows when their milk comes in so does the need to defecate or urinate or both. So the milkmaid needs to train the cow.
It is like training a puppy – all about the reward.
Especially with a cow like Lady A – she wants to be good. This Friday she is due to come back into heat – that will be interesting. With the little bull in the field with her we will know for sure if she is in heat or not.
Isn’t farming so – um – Earthy.
I don’t want to raise anyone’s hopes, especially my own but Tima is looking suspiciously large in the belly, but then she always has so I don’t know. I have not seen her come into heat for a while either but I stopped logging her changes preferring to let her be. So this time I am not changing anything – not taking Tane out, not putting her in the barn, no changes. Every time I changed things in the past, anticipating babies, she lost them. She may be pregnant or she may just be fat but she has been on grass alone for a while now. If she is pregnant and she is coming to term she can have a natural child birth. But I hold little hope. I can feel no movement in there. We have been here before. I think I will say nothing of this again. Not to jinx it.
I hope you have a good day.
I have a busy day with international family visitors arriving tomorrow.