Change of plans - this time for the better!

Sep 20 2012 0 Comments Tags: calf, cow, house cow

I had given up on this foster calf idea ever working and was planning to have to milk twice a day for ages and to make lots and lots of cheese.... but then on Wednesday morning, one week after Bella had her calf and it died, we milked her and only got 4 L, rather than 12 L.  We also noticed that replacement calf Romeo was happy lying down in the paddock instead of standing by the gate to wait for his milk.  We put 2 and 2 together, but we didn't believe it until we saw it later, after breakfast. first we saw Bella licking Romeo clean and then she let him have a drink.

Bella with her new calf :)
It looks like Bella has officially adopted Romeo, and all of her own accord, no trickery required (only because we didn't think Bella would fall for it).  We are very proud of her.

We are very pleased to have recruited a share-milker, a very greedy little share-milker at that!  We had to lock him up in the evening because we only got 2 L for the afternoon milking, which we gave to Benny (the Braford calf that we brought home a while ago).  The good thing is that Romeo is nearly taking all the milk by himself, so soon we will be able to milk only once a day, and then we will be able to just milk whenever we want, which means we will be able to go away for weekends and holidays afterall instead of being stuck with milking twice a day for the next few months!

The only downside is less milk for cheese, but at least there's no pressure to make cheese after work now, we'll probably just collect enough through the week to make a cheese in the weekend.  We had actually started feeding Bella less grain to help her udder swelling to reduce and avoid mastitis, but now that we want more milk, and we know that Romeo will help take the rest of the milk, she gets more grain, which I'm sure she doesn't mind.

Anyway, I'll write more later about what we learnt during this week of foster calf limbo, just wanted to let you all know that we had  happy ending.


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