All right soldier, you need to milk a cow, pronto. Perhaps you're stranded in some third world country like Central Pennsylvania or Uzbekistan and need to eat, or a cow has gone unmilked for weeks. This is an emergency, a life or death situation, your life or the life an extremly large animal may be in the balance here, so listen up private!
First get yourself together. If you're not relaxed or psyched up, now is the time to get into one of those states. Do what ever you would normally do when in a time like this. Try jogging in place and shadow boxing, if you know yoga or tai-chi get connected with your inner self or what ever those practitioners search for. If you smoke, go outside and have one or two or three. Just get into a comfortable state.
Second get your materials together. Suggested in order of importance:
- Something to deposit the milk in, like a bucket or pan and if available a larger container to dump exceess milk in
- Something to sit on. Anything will do, a stack of hay or a box.
- A rag and some warm soapy water, if available (optional)
- Bottle and rubber nipple (very optional)
- A partner (if available)
Third set up and secure the area. Find a nice clear, comfortable spot to lead the cow to. If you happen to be in a barn with lockable stalls, lead the cow over toward the stall and lock its head in place. If you have a partner, have him or her lure the cow into place with two handfulls of feed (not straw, or bedding), and set up a small pile of stuff to eat, to keep it occupied. If you are in a tie stall barn, tie the cow into place comfortably, make sure the rope has a little slack on it, but not enough so that it can lie down. If you are in neither types of areas, pull a McGuyver and fashion a method of securing the cow. Any post or pole will no doubt suffice. Get yourself towards the rear of the cow and set up your thing to sit on.
Now comes the hard part
. If you plan to consume this milk yourself, its time to use that soap and water that I'm sure you prepared ahead of time
. Sit down on the stool, and get your rag ready. If you don't want to ruin your shirt take it off now
. If you feel a bit nervous or are unfamilliar with that particular cow, Pat the it on it's rear thigh/buttock to let it know you are there
. Wipe each nipple with the rag, making sure to remove any large chunks of bedding or feces
. Squeeze the rag out and wipe 'em down one more time. If the cow jumps a little while you are handling its udders, give it's rear ass area a nice quick massage, they seem to like this. Keep in mind that they can still kick you even though you are standing to the side of them (more likely so in this case)
Fourth: Before you put the milk you want to use in the pail, first the cow must be prepped, or stripped. Choose a nipple and grasp it at the base with your palm facing toward you. The nipples should be firm and erect, and so should the milk sac (the thing where the nipples are protruding from). Firmly squeeze and tug the nipple in a downward motion until milk squirts out. It may take a couple of tugs to get it started, or you may have to squeeze the nipple in any possible direction. Try to squeeze the nipple in the direction it is pointing. Pay attention to what comes out. If a cheese like substance or chunky milk is secreted, the cow may have mastitis keep yanking on the nipple until it comes out clean. If the milk is pink or unusually brown, you are most likely dealing with colostrum and a new mother. Make a note to yourself or partner to NOT DRINK THE MILK in either case. However it's okeeday to give the collostrum to a young calf. Repeat three more times. If you see any small extrenious, or visibly damaged nipples don't touch them. They hate it when you do that. If nothing comes out of one of the nipples make a note of it and leave it alone. Now you are ready to make it milk.
Fifth and finally: Set your collection device underneath the cow's udders (tits)and continue squeezing as previously instructed. Depending on the age and breed of the cow, your milking time will vary, but be prepared to spend at least a good half hour at this. The cow will be done milking when milk has stopped comming out of its nipple(s) and each respective nipple has become flacid, and the milk sac is spongy and soft. If you need to give the milk to a calf or other small animal, put it in the bottle, and beat feet. Be sure to refrigiderate the milk if the facilities permit it. Game Over
Please keep in mind that it should be considered unsafe to consume any milk that is unpasturized or unhomogenized. You should never EVER drink colostrum unless you want to get sick, or are a new born calf. Dispose of any milk that came from a cow with mastitis, please DONT drink it! If the cow is really jumpy and kicky, just back away and let it be. Saftey first, when in doubt call a professional, void where prohibited, your mileage may vary etc.