The birth of Ultima to Feliz, half-sister of Trish (they were from the same bull) and second of our future 1/2 Brown Swiss 1/2 Jersey herd! She looks almost identical to Trish, but there are a few subtle differences. Trish is pretty like her mom Liberate, while Ultima is has distinctive facial features unlike Feliz. She also is much more like Feliz in temperament; she's more excitable, and we had a lot more trouble when we were first teaching her to lead. It took her a solid week to get the idea, whereas Trish led easily three days after being born. It will be interesting to observe them as they grow up!
Ultima with Shalom at 10 days old.
We feared that Liberate lost her quarter last lactation (a month after we purchased her) from edema. When Trish was born, we realized that her quarter was certainly not "dead," being full of milk. However, when we tried to milk it nothing came out. We tried to avoid edema this lactation by feeding grass hay, but she still had a little, and we tried our best to eliminate it quickly.
In the 5 days before we took her to WSU, it didn't get any better despite much massaging, Uddermud, and frequent milking. We took a milk sample to Potlatch vet to make sure it was not Staph. We squirted a mix of essential oils into the teat to prevent mastitis while trying to get rid of the edema. The Smicks loaned us their trailer, and we took her to WSU hoping they could save the quarter. Instead the ultrasound revealed that scar tissue prevented milk from coming out, and there was no mastitis at all to cause swelling/edema; the quarter was just engorged.
When dad suggested to the vet we might cull her, the vet (same vet that did her bowel blockage surgery) said, "I'm in love with her. If at some point you want to get rid of her, WSU does buy dairy animals for students to work with." Dad said we would let them know in July when the grass was done. The vet said to stop milking the quarter and never milk it again and the pressure would cause the milk producing cells to be eliminated (along with any risk of mastitis), and that she may produce nearly as much with three quarters as she would have with four!
She is astonishing us with over 8 gallons of milk per day (she overflowed the bucket with 4.7 gallons in one milking), and we hope it will go up to 10 when she gets on spring grass!
Meet Trish, daughter of our gentle giant Liberate and the first of our future herd composed of 1/2 Brown Swiss and 1/2 Jersey cows. She's growing fast, and she's adorable. We are teaching her to lead, and she is doing very well. She has beautiful conformation, and in temperament she already resembles her calm, nonchalant mother.
Josh: Founder, father