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.