You want to milk your cows faster ?

You want to milk your cows faster, there is no secret! Make sure that everyone on the farm is using the same routine and not in a mind-set that this is how I have been taught and this is the way I do things.

On a recent visit to implement a milking – time test / Dynamic test

The cows were entering the parlour and the pressure of the bag meant that the cows were leaking milk, the herdsman said look the cows are happy content and are stimulated

How wrong he was, he placed the unit onto the cow and yes she milked for 30 seconds then she stopped and there was liner slip .

The leaking milk was Cisternal milk let down

Research now shows for the oxytocin to reach the udder it can take 90 seconds or more for alveolar milk-let down.

The ideal protocol includes:

Pre-dip with chlorine dioxide

Rub teat end and strip

Re-dip with chlorine dioxide

Wipe with individual cloth towel

Attach at 90 seconds after first stimulation

Detach when milk flow is less than 400ml per minute with two-second delay

Post-dip with 1 percent iodine with conditioner

The more physical contact with the teat end, the more you will see a positive effect.

The average milking time is 3- 4 minutes per cow, with an average of 3.5 litres of milk per minute

 “Yes I do have farms that average 5-6 litres a minute “the first two minutes, which directly relates to udder stimulation, watch to see if the cow milks consistently.

Other key factors are moving the cows in a calm fashion so they are comfortable walking into the parlour and training the cows how to be milked.

Teamwork among the owners, milkers and equipment dealers is overriding.

Maintenance is key in the parlour since it can run up to 18 hours a day there isn’t another piece of equipment on the farm that is used as much as the parlour, so ensure it is running at top speed all the time, liner change is essential.

Pulsators and the milking system should be graphed monthly. Pulsators, hoses and meters are also inspected regularly.

Post dipping is essential as the teat would have been soaked with milk, ensure you cover the whole teat” some post dipping flushing units may save time but don’t cover the whole teat and are not as efficient as you may think “make sure you use good quality teat Post dip with conditioner whether it’s fine-tuning the milking procedure or making adjustments to facilities, you need all employees in tune with what is necessary for its cows to achieve optimal success.

Being stuck in a routine is not the way forward; trying new methods over a couple of days will not ensure a better milking routine.

The success of the milking routine

The success of the milking routine is a concerted effort between the cow, the operator, and the milking facilities. Good milking starts with a clean, healthy, properly prepared cow. Cleanliness is important to avoid transfer of mastitis-causing organisms from the environment to cows’ udders and from cow to cow during milking. The ease and speed of cleaning teats is directly related to the cleanliness of cows when they enter the parlour. The environment has direct bearing on the efficacy of the milking process. Correct teat Stimulation prepares cows to release their milk and is important to reduce the time required to remove milk. Reducing the time that milking units are attached to the cow will improve milking parlour efficacy and reduce teat tissue stress and related mastitis risk. An effective and efficient milking process is as follows:

Always strive to provide a clean, low stress housing environment for cows.

Maintain a consistent operating routine for bringing cows to the milking parlour and during the milking process.

Check foremilk and udder for mastitis.

Apply an effective pre-milking sanitizer to teats.

Remove debris and dry teats completely with an individual towel.

Attach milking unit from 1 to 4 min after the start of stimulation.

Adjust units as necessary for proper alignment.

Shut off vacuum when milk flow rate has dropped to a minimal level and remove milking units.

Apply a post-milking germicide to teats.

 None of the above should be disregarded if mastitis prevention and quality milk production are your goals. Pre-milking procedures should be performed in the same manner and order of operation for every milking. The order in which cows are milked can have an impact on controlling the spread of mastitis the chance of spreading mastitis organisms from cow to cow is reduced. The milking parlour should be designed so that the various steps in the milking routine can be performed efficiently and easily, providing cow handling and positioning facilities and convenient locations for the equipment used for cow preparation such as towel dispensers, teat dip cups, or permanently mounted power dipping cups.