March 20 2024 08:56 AM

A regular morning in the parlor produced my most unbelievable farm story.

We all have a couple of crazy farm stories we break out at parties. Stupid mistakes we’ve made, ridiculous things our animals have done, or crazy stories of crazy people doing crazy things. Well, I think I may have the craziest, most unexplainable cow story of all. After you’ve read it, leave your story in the comments, or try to explain the phenomenon I’ve labeled as the disappearing teat.

It was a morning like any other; I was milking cows with my dad. I was in the parlor alone for a few minutes while he was putting the rest of the cows under the crowd gate when I came upon Muy Bien, one of my favorite cows. When you know your cows well enough, you don’t have to look at each teat to wipe them. I went to wipe her front two teats and couldn’t find one of them. So, I start freaking out. I know exactly where that teat is supposed to be, and it’s not there. My only thought is that she ripped her entire teat off! I immediately pull the rag back to look for blood. There has to be blood, right? But there isn’t. There’s nothing. So, I bend down to further investigate and see . . . nothing. No blood. No teat. Nothing.

Logic tells me that there can’t be nothing. There must be a scab or a hole or something left behind. Feeling around, I find a hole. As any self-respecting dairy farmer would, I stick my finger in it. I kid you not, her teat was fully intact, sucked up inside her udder.

I’m just going to let you think about that for a second.

Seriously, it was sucked up, inside out, inside her udder. No pain. No trauma. Just inside out. By the next milking, it was back to normal, and she milked just fine as if nothing had happened.

I still have no idea how it happened, maybe some sort of negative pressure situation, but I do wish I could replicate it. Think about it — it would be the perfect milking prep procedure. If cows could suck their teats back inside their udder, we’d never have to prep a cow again.

Jessica Peters

The author dairies in partnership with her parents and brother at Spruce Row Farm in Pennsylvania. Jessica is a graduate of Pennsylvania State University, and since 2015, she has been active in promoting dairy in her local community. You can find her and her 250 Jersey cows on Facebook at Spruce Row Dairy or on Instagram at @seejessfarm.