Walk down a dairy aisle and you may start to notice how little we've done with the whole concept. Worldwide, there are about 6,000 mammal species, each with its own unique milk, but Americans get at least 97 percent of all our dairy products from one animal. (That would be the cow.) Even at my local Whole Foods, purveyors of exotica like shad roe and that kombucha stuff, there was only a single brand of goat’s milk. “EASY TO DIGEST!” reads the desperate carton.
Over at the cheese counter, the situation was a little better. Sheep’s milk made a decent showing. But was that it?
“There's a buffalo-milk mozzarella over in the refrigerator section, but yeah,” the cheesemonger told me. “I know a chef who's trying to make a pig's-milk cheese. I'm not sure how that's going.”
There's nothing wrong with dog's milk. Full of goodness, full of vitamins, full of marrowbone jelly. Lasts longer than any other type of milk, dog's milk -- cuz no bugger'll drink it.
Plus, of course, the advantage of dog's milk is that when it goes off, it tastes exactly the same as when it's fresh.
Actually, I study a wetland region similar to that of the great marshes of the pre-modern Netherlands (drained in the medieval period) where sheep were difficult to keep at all - they got footrot in freshwater wetlands and cattle aren't as susceptible. So cattle were the most common livestock, though sheep were kept on the upland field areas (great manure).
The Greeks could not decide whether the Jews worshipped swine or abominated them. On the one hand they might not eat swine; but on the other hand they might not kill them. And if the former rule speaks for the uncleanness, the latter speaks still more strongly for the sanctity of the animal. For whereas both rules may, and one rule must, be explained on the supposition that the pig was sacred; neither rule must, and one rule cannot, be explained on the supposition that the pig was unclean. If, therefore, we prefer the former supposition, we must conclude that, originally at least, the pig was revered rather than abhorred by the Israelites. We are confirmed in this opinion by observing that down to the time of Isaiah some of the Jews used to meet secretly in gardens to eat the flesh of swine and mice as a religious rite. Doubtless this was a very ancient ceremony, dating from a time when both the pig and the mouse were venerated as divine, and when their flesh was partaken of sacramentally on rare and solemn occasions as the body and blood of gods. And in general it may perhaps be said that all so-called unclean animals were originally sacred; the reason for not eating them was that they were divine.
When reading Game of Thrones I thought the Dothraki fermented milk was just an invention by George R.R. Martin, but I guess if it has sugar in it there's no reason why you couldn't....
To cattle ranchers, sheepherders were even less welcome than homesteaders. Sheep grazed the grass to the roots and contributed to overgrazed, depleted ranges. Ethnic and religious prejudice added to tension with sheepherders. In the southwest, shepherds were usually Mexican or Indian, while in Nevada and the northwest they were often Mormons or Basque immigrants from the region along the French-Spanish border. With these new elements on the plains, violent range wars sometimes broke out as cattle drovers, homesteaders, and sheepherders found themselves at odds. Eventually land and water use was worked out between ranchers and farmers through laws and agreements, and sheepherders took their flocks to marginal and high altitude ranges that were unsuitable for cattle but where sheep did well. Land use was everywhere restricted, and the great sweep of open country that had once characterized the West became only a memory."
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