When to dehorn

Discussion in 'Goats' started by Batt, Oct 4, 2006.

  1. Batt

    Batt In Remembrance Supporter

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    Because of family illness (them, not me) I was unable to take delivery of April born doelings until now. They did get wormed and shots OK, but haven't been dehorned. Is it too late?
     
  2. shelljo

    shelljo Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yes, unless you want to have the vet surgically remove them.
     

  3. moonspinner

    moonspinner Well-Known Member

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    If you were able to pare them down and get an iron around it might be possible. Otherwise, it's either you now have horned goats or you could surgically (not a procedure I'd recommend myself) or possibly band those horns. Those goats being young enough might do well with banding.
     
  4. Batt

    Batt In Remembrance Supporter

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    Banding? Sorry, VERY new to this.
     
  5. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I read an article that showed how a Canadian farm banded something like 60 goats. They waited until after the flies were gone. It seemed to work just fine.

    The wethers I had this summer are going to get their horns banded soon.

    I'll look for the article and post the link.

    http://www.greatgoats.com/articles/dehorning_text.html

    Removing horns by cutting is supposed to be very painful.
     
  6. Doeseatoats

    Doeseatoats Active Member

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    I purchased a dehorning iron that was open on one side and formed a open circle. I have the standard solid type but use this one on the 1 and 2 inch horns or scurs...Elastrators work but are very painful and when they loose the horn sometimes there is bleeding. If I do purchase a goat with horns I will use piano wire and saw them to the skull line or if they are small enough but too large for the iron I will cut them at the base with nippers. Any way you do it the burning at 5 to 10 days is the best. Less trauma for you and them....:) :nono:
     
  7. moonspinner

    moonspinner Well-Known Member

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    Yes, that is another option to cut them with a wire saw. They would keep growing though and you'd have to keep them down, but at least you wouldn't have the large horns sticking up. BTW, several breeders I know who band horns have reported no serious pain. But they are experts at getting the band to fit perfectly in the groove and don't band on older goats and/or those with large horns.
     
  8. Batt

    Batt In Remembrance Supporter

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    Ok, I understand the banding now. Just never heard of it being used on the front end.
     
  9. stacygoats

    stacygoats Well-Known Member

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    I had a 5 month old doe (DD's favorite) that partially broke a horn off and it was bleeding profusely. Took her to my vet's home that evening and had them both surgically removed. Vet put her out before starting the "kind of gruesome process", but she recovered quickly. Kept her in a stall for a week to avoid any head butting with the other goats. The vet said she has removed horns surgically from much older goats and it left permanent sink marks on the top of their head, but ours was young enough you can't even tell.
     
  10. dosthouhavemilk

    dosthouhavemilk Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The dehorning of choice by the local vet's assitstant is to use an OB wire to saw off the horns then burn the area to prevent regrowth.
    Ugly procedure, especially when done on mature goats. I watched as they did that to three goats with very mature horns.
    We were there getting some three and four months old kids done that we had decided to keep afterall. That was back when we left horns on anything we planned to sell. Now we burn everything born here regardless of where it will end up.
    Our kids were done the same way. Liliana has a small scur. Milky Way's head is fairly clean and Elegence's head is as well. These are our 4 year olds and they can be seen on our website.

    After that experience, I decided we would never dehorn an animal that comes with horns. If they weren't burned in time (I prefer under a week for both calves and kids), they would keep those horrible things.
    So we have 5 does with horns in the herd currently. One who routinely tries to gore me with them because she hates me. You all have seen her photo. Who can blame her? I was the one shooting mastitis treatment in her eyes constantly, I'm the one who has been worming her and dad is the one feeding her...so she associates my voice and me with all the bad things that have happened to here since she arrived here.

    In any case, no it is not too late (it is never really too late) but it is not likely to be a pleasant experience for you all at this stage.
     
  11. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't understand why banding horns would be painful. Wouldn't they just go numb like your finger with a band on it?

    The article I linked to seemed to say that it wasn't painful unless you bumped the horn off early.
     
  12. lotsofmuddypaws

    lotsofmuddypaws Member

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    Over the past summer we have dehorned about fourteen of our goats using the banding method. We have dehorned two month olds with tiny horns, and mature goats with full sets of horns. This method has worked in every one of the goats.
    Yes, it is painful for some of them. The first day most of the goats cry alot, but then they never seem to be bothered by it again.
    The older goats with larger horns seem to have less pain.
    Also, I have not seen any bleeding using this method, unless the horn is hit before it is ready to fall off. Then there may be some blood. Otherwise, I have not seen any bad affects.