Help! My milk cow has been eating onion grass or wild garlic and the milk is tainted and flavored with the garlic taste. Short of feeding it to the pigs, is there anything I can do to remove the taste? It happened suddenly, and up til now has been delicious. She gets sweet feed while milking, hay free choice, and now the pasture has come on quickly with spring. Help!
Fulks Run, Virginia
There really isn’t anything you can do to remove the taste from the milk. I’d probably keep her in a corral or pen and feed hay until the pasture has matured a little. Then she will (hopefully) eat more grass and legumes and less wild garlic. It’s usually that lush first-spring greens that tempt the cows to overeat on them and thus off-flavor the milk. — Jackie
I recently became the owner of a rescue Mini-Nubian doeling. I found out recently that her birth date is January 25. I’ve had her since March 19 and thought at the time that she was much older because I was told that she had been weaned for quite a while. Then I was told her mother had triplets and became sick and died. Consequently I don’t know if she ever had colostrum or was fed properly. She was sick with some sort of respiratory issue when we got her and the weather was nasty cold. She had a cloggy cough, snotty nose (clear), was listless and weak. We did the antibiotic thing with probiotics, a sweater and lots of attention. She seems to have gotten well; happy, jumps around a lot but still has a cloggy sounding cough kind of like she’s strangling. Also, her left side about where I think her rib cage ends, protrudes. At first I thought she had a weird cowlick but now I see that it’s as if her ribs are expanded on that side. What does this sound like to you? We’ve also got her on goat food, minerals, baking soda (sprinkled on her food so I know she gets it)hay and pasture. The cough worries me as does the protruding side. I have had her fecal tested and was told she was clean but to recheck in a month or so.
I’m a goat newbie and don’t know if there is a real issue or if I am worrying for nothing. I’d hate to lose her, we love her a lot already.
dian Iron Feather-Carton
Birch Tree, Missouri
I’d advise taking her to your vet so he can listen to her lungs. She may have chronic pneumonia and may need a course of antibiotics. He can check out the rib issue at the same time. That may be because she’s having respiratory distress and just not getting enough oxygen. I would probably see if she would take goat milk replacer with a bottle and nipple (lamb or goat). With her rough start, she may need a little boost and I’ve found that putting the babies back on milk gives them a little extra boost in times of need. — Jackie