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Question
I have 3 does who I'm wanting to be dry all at once. All kinders and 3 years old.
Flower is a mother who has one kid right now. She had two but o e we had to put down. Baby only drank out of one side for a while and we got flower to stop producing milk and she was quickly reabsorbing her milk until the baby switched sides (went from right side to left). It looked like the right side was fullish so I attempted to try to get some out yesterday but almost nothing was coming out so I figured hopefully she stopped producing milk on the right. And now louanne (her baby) is three months old so I think she's basically weaned. I haven't seen her nurse in a few days. Now I'm mad because the right side still looks full like it did yesterday. Should I leave it alone and let everything absorb? What should I be doing with her?
Bambi is another goat I have that lost both of her kids 4 days before louanne was born and I finally got the drying process down but I'm now stuck on her because she stopped producing milk but she still had some in her but I figured if I milked it then her milk would begin to produce again. I have a friend who comes to vaccinate my goats every once in a while and said I should milk it out because it wouldn't come back. Well it did. I milked her 9 days ago and it looked the exact same. How to get a goat completely dry? With no milk in her at all? I milked out half tonight because I figured I could try starting the drying process over? Maybe I'm not doing it right? I want to breed her again and was told I couldn't breed if she still had milk.
My third doe Silly is apparently another great milk producer. She never weaned her babies before I sold them. I thought she had but within a week after I sold them (at 15 weeks) she got a huge full udder again. I sold her babies two years ago and she hasn't been bred since. We milked out about once a week and finally she stopped producing but again she still had one udder with milk sitting in it. I was told by another fellow livestock owner she had mastitis so I panicked and milked it. Within days there was one side with milk in it still. I bred her already and she's 2 months into pregnancy and I want her milk gone too.

I'm so confused and frustrated because all my goats are still making milk! Should I try going half every few days again and see if they stop making? I really would rather not milk at all. I know people buy goats to have milk so I shouldn't complain but I bought my goats as pets and didn't think I'd have milk for two years straight. Please help! I'm at wits ends because I've tried so hard!

Answer
The best way to dry up a doe is to be sure to take away their kids so no sucking on the mammary system is happening.  You stop all grain, milk out, let the doe fill up for 2 days, milk her out again, still no grain (and no alfalfa), let her fill up again for another 2 days, still no grain, by day 5 to 7 (after continuing the above regimen) the mammary system should stop making milk.  Milk out one final time and that should do it.  You can also use "Tomorrow", a cow intramammary infusion that helps dry up the mammary system and keeps mastitis away while drying up.  You use half of one tube on each side of the udder, and in 2 days re do that.  

I am assuming the issue is that the does are still getting grain and/or alfalfa.  Hope this helps - Donna - let me know.

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Donna Ruelas-Semasko/Edelweiss Acres

Expertise

All goat health care, nutrition, judging questions about all goats - packgoats, dairy goats, pygmy goats, meat goats, fleece goats.

Experience

27 years health care/nutrition of all types of goats, 17 years experience in packgoats, 20 years experience in 4H goat projects as leader, superintendent and judge. 20 years experience in putting on goat care/nutrition seminars.

Organizations
NAPgA, The Evergreen Packgoat Club, 4H, ADGA.

Publications
Hobby Farm, many newspapers, 4H newsletters, Packgoat Manuals (youth and general), judging information pamphlets, seminar handouts about health care and nutrition.

Education/Credentials
4 years of college, ongoing education in goats.

Awards and Honors
Small Farm Award of Thurston County

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