The City Girl Farmer

Freezing Cold and Exploding Udders
February 10, 2011, 1:40 pm
Filed under: Cows, Weather

Poor Rosie. The day she calved her udder was so full the milk just dripped and sometimes sprayed out of her. Her skin was stretched so tight that I thought it would tear. Her udder looked like a blown up rubber glove with the teats pointed outward. She was so full we could only get a thumb and a forefinger on each teat and because they pointed away from her center, we had to milk one at a time. We were milking about a half gallon at a time out of a cow who was producing about 2 1/2 gallons of milk twice a day. Two days after she calved we had her in a stanchion for 5 hours trying to milk her.

The next day we reached our record cold temperatures for the year. (I hope anyway!) The high that day was -7 and the low -16 and the wind was howling at about 25-30 miles an hour. The guy we bought our cow from just happened to be in Colorado and just happened to call to see how everything was going. He offered to loan us a milking machine, and while I had been reluctant to use a milking machine, I decided to take him up on his offer. That is the smartest decision I’ve made in recent history. We drove 2 hours one way to where he was to pick up the machine, came home and milked out the cow. It took three people to work the machine but we made it happen and we did it again the next morning.

IMG 20110202 075912

Baby cow asleep in the kitchen

We brought the new calf into our kitchen because we don’t have the facilities to maintain calves at a toasty 40 degrees when the weather is like that.

We are continuing to keep her warm in our kitchen as the temperatures have been below zero and in the single digits at night, but we’re looking forward to relocating her tomorrow when we expect to have low temperatures in the 20’s. I really need to be convinced about this global warming thing…

3 Comments so far
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I am glad you didn’t mean “exploding” in the literal sense. Whew!

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