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Lending a hand to those milking by hand

We were excited to talk to another satisfied customer last week! Linda has one of our Ultimate EZ milkers and says it’s a lifesaver for her and her husband, who both have health problems that make hand milking difficult. Here’s her story:

Linda Huffer had a problem. Huffer, of Hickory Hill Farm in Indiana, keeps about 24 Mini Alpine and Mini San Clemente Island goats on her farm, and one of them, Huggy Bear, was a little finicky about being milked.


Huffer knows each of her goats very well. She started milking goats ten years ago when she learned she could drink their milk (she cannot have cow’s milk). A handful turned into a herd as she bred several of her does and bottle-raised immature or weak kids. Huffer pats each of them and delivers animal crackers on her way through the field each day. She says each of her goats has their own names, and their own quirks—one goat is the greeter on the farm, always the first to arrive at the fence when she spots newcomers, sometimes with a kiss. Several are latch experts who recently took a trip into the hay barn.


“You always had to milk her by hand,” said Huffer of Huggy Bear. “She’s just kind of a clown. She’ll come when you call her, but she wants an animal cracker right then. She’s getting older, but we wouldn’t get rid of her.”


Huggy Bear is full of personality. Her tongue tends to stick out a little. She’s affectionate and well-balanced (often known to walk on her hind legs when in need of some attention), but she can be sensitive when it comes to milking time.


Although Huffer had been using the Udderly EZ™ hand pump milker for years, Huggy Bear was the only doe who would pace and squirm, ultimately knocking it off her teats.


Huffer, who had hand surgery several years ago, would have to milk the goat by hand, which required a degree of motor skill that was really difficult for her


“I have a hard time opening plastic bags or getting the lids off of bottles. A lot of them I just can’t open,” she said.


It wasn’t an easy task, and it took a lot of time. Huffer’s husband has had several major surgeries in recent years, and was unable to help her.


Huffer was excited to learn about the Ultimate EZ™ milker, a new machine by EZ Animal products. The Ultimate EZ™ combines the ease and comfort of the Udderly EZ™ with the speed of an automatic pump, and for Huffer it was an enormous help.


“It saves a lot of time and it’s easy on my hands. It just makes life easier,” she said. “I was always having to fight with her to stand still. This gives me more freedom and the usage of my hands. I’m milking all of them with this new milker. It’s just awesome.”


The milker has the same silicone tubes that fit comfortably onto the goats’ teats, and the electric pump allows Huffer to milk out one of her goats in three to four minutes. Best of all, even Huggy Bear loves it.


“I just make sure the teat is wet, and if I get ahold of the top of the tube and put it right up on the goat, I don’t have any problems,” she said.


The unit comes equipped with a vacuum gauge and regulator to maintain the pressure on the teats. It is very important not to operate higher than the recommended 12.5 Hg of pressure for cows, and 11 Hg of pressure for Goats and Sheep which are clearly marked on the dial.


The Ultimate EZ™ is simple to take apart and clean unlike many pulsator machines, and is as simple as its hand-operated cousin to keep sanitary. Huffer drinks her goats’ milk (she says it cured her acid reflux disease), and also makes it into cheese and soaps, which she sells locally.


Even better for Huffer, the Ultimate EZ™ is much more affordable than most pulsator machines. She and her husband are retired, and the price was so good that she plans to buy another machine or two for next year. In the meantime, the Ultimate EZ™ is so easy to use that she can show her neighbors and husband how to operate it in preparation for her recovery from a scheduled knee surgery later this year.


“We sold three this year. If I’d had the Ultimate EZ™ milker then I never would have sold them,” she said. “There’s not enough words to express our gratitude to Buck [Wheeler, owner of EZ Animal Products] for what he has accomplished in making this milker available to the general public for use on all animals.”



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