Milking dairy goats brings us a lot of joy. Take a look at those long floppy ears and you can see why we adore these critters. Moreover, they are a practical addition to the farmstead.
Stigma Surrounding Dairy Goats
Why milk goats? After all, their reputation proceeds them. These skilled escape artists make most homesteaders leery of them. Non-homesteaders quickly share tales of their misdeeds as well. With a steady diet of tin cans and clean laundry straight off the line, no wonder their milk tastes funny. Stories abound of goats eating prized rose bushes or tap dancing on the hood of car.
The Truth About Milking Goats
They are called scapegoats for a reason. They bear a lot of ill will. The truth is most farm animals escape from their pens. Cows will chew through wiring on tractors like an over grown gerbil. Chickens readily decimate garden produce. And, cows delight in a pea patch just as much as goats. Further, cow’s milk, if not properly handled tastes bad. Goat milk properly handled contains no off flavor.
Benefits of Keeping Goats
Goats offer many benefits. First, it is common knowledge that goat milk is easier to digest than cow’s milk. From tiny tots to elderly and anywhere in between, those who have lactose intolerance are able to drink goat milk.
Second, their smaller size makes them easier to manage. I worry less about about the children handling them as a result. An unruly goat causes less damage than a 1,000 lb milk cow. A kick from a goat smarts. But, a blow from a cow may lead to broken bones.
Third, the benefits of adding goats milk to bath and body products is widely known. Many cite the example of Cleopatra and her famous milk baths for beautifying skin.
Finally, goats are affordable. The cost of large milking animals discourages many from starting a homestead. Large animals require expensive equipment like stock trailers.
We started our farmstead all over again in 2015. Serving as missionaries in Central America meant we sold all of our livestock and farm equipment. Upon our return to the U. S., Goats were an easy way to re-enter farming on a limited budget.
Milking is a joy on our farm. Enjoy this behind the scenes look at milking our goats.