The new milking parlor is working out great. Here we see Papa John in his overalls milking Petunia.
Nigerian Dwarf Goats make the perfect milkers for a Mini-Farm like ours. They are the smallest of the dairy goats and each produce about a quart of milk a day. Because of their size they are easy to handle especially if they were hand raised. They fall into the routine quickly and enjoy being milked. Milking the does further increases the bond they feel for you and is another great stress reliever for both. We use a little hand operated milking machine that cost around $50. I am still using the original machine after more than two years of constant use.
The milk we get supples us for both drinking and cheese making. Some of our friends also make soap and lotion from it, and have thriving little businesses. Because of the milks richness and ease on the digestive tract, we prefer it to cows milk. We drink it both pasteurized and unpasteurized. We've used the cream to make sour cream and butter.We regularly make yogurt to eat and add to smoothies.
Milking really requires very little equipment. I basically recommend a milking stand to help hold the does in one place and allow her to eat her grain when you milk. I made mine out of PVC pipe for the frame and 2x4 pine for the decking. It can be made in an hour or two and I am glad to help.
Hand milking is easy with a little training and practice. I have had good luck with a little hand milker. I am happy to demonstrate and train anyone that is interested.
If you want to pasteurize your milk, it can be done quickly using a pot of boiling water, Glass jars, and a thermometer.