Need input on dehorning

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by Qvrfullmidwife, Nov 24, 2008.

  1. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    We just came into possesion of two nubian does. They are 3.5 months into their first pregnancies, due to kid around Christmas time, they are already developing the sweetest little udders. (I love that point!)

    The problem is that they both have never been disbudded and now have a nice set of horns each.

    I figure we have three options.

    Surgical dehorning at A&M. We have seen VERY good results with it but it is $$$ tho we really didn't spend anything on the does themselves. I am not sure that it would be good to expose them to the anesthesia when they are pregnant...and what about later when milking?

    Banding. We have seen mixed results from this. Definitely not ideal. I am concerned about the pain and possible infection while pregnant plus the fact that we have not ever seen it work really well, at best we have seen tolerable results.

    Not doing anything. This would be only for a brief period of time for I have no intention of subjecting the animals already here to horns nor do I intend to house them separately for life, I simply do not have the room and our milking set-up cannot accommodate it. I am merely talking about not doing anything until they kid. But then we are back to the same set of questions.
     
  2. stacy adams

    stacy adams New Member

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    I'm with you there on those questions! gee.. first of all, I agree with not doing anything while they're pregnant.
    Second, and not knowing the circumstances in which you got them, have you considered keeping them till they kid, then selling them off? that way, you get something out of them and recoup your money.
    We had a yearling heifer dehorned last year- Good Lord, that was horrid! don't know how it is on a goat, but I won't do that to a cow again.
    Can't help you out with the banding as I've never done it on horns, but if your wanting to keep these two does and not sink a ton of cash into them, and the banding is as you say, tolerable, then that may be the best way to go. Especially if they're going to kid in the winter, get it done soon and no flys to worry about!
     

  3. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    Nope on selling them, we need the milk we are selling every drop that we have as is.

    The goat that we had dehorned was done surgically by A&M. He did very well, came out of teh anesthesia quickly and will no ill effects. The hardest part for his was having to be seperate from teh other boys until his head healed. But, of course, he wasnt bred.
     
  4. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    There is no time on a working dairy that is more or less stressfull to disbud. Pregnancy, certainly not in early pregnancy nor wait until the last 50 days. Milking, the stress of surgery and the recoup time is still going to put them by themselves...then fly season then not milking very well towards the end of lactation and they are bred back.

    Will your vet scoop them like they do calves? Control the bleeding by pulling the veins? Causterising the end result which is then not an open wound although you can have some cavity showing into the sinus? Banamine for pain obviously. Update on tetanus. Vicki
     
  5. stacy adams

    stacy adams New Member

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    :duh what was I thinking..!? I forgot you were a working dairy.. :blush2
     
  6. Cotton Eyed Does

    Cotton Eyed Does New Member

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    If it were me, I would find somewhere to keep them separate from other's udders (horns and udders don't mix) until a couple weeks after they kid, let their milk come in well and know they have recouped from giving birth, etc., then have them surgically removed.
     
  7. bonafide

    bonafide Guest

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    Good luck in whatever you decide - I personally am glad to have the cows we have now - NO HORNS (WOO HOO) - but as for the goats, I disbud - I have used bands on scurs - never on full horns - it wasn't pretty as when they fell off it bled - but no more so than it does when the bucks with scurs get a little scrappy...but again, it's just on scurs, most of the time the scurs are awful small...

    I had a vet to de-horn one of my heifers - it was the most horrible thing I've ever seen. When I worked on the dairy farm, we had electric dehorners - they seemed a lot less ... stressful - although on a pain level I don't imagine I'd want to be on the receiving end of the burner...the vet we used had this manual dehorner that he had to open to cut with (like reverse scissors) liked to killed me just watching the poor thing - she screamed, he fought and fought and I truly felt bad for her --- hoping your vet has more sense than this guy did....(long story with him - not sure how he's even a vet ---- but that's for another day LOL)

    Good luck - hope whatever you decide works out. :)
     
  8. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    When we use A&M it is (unless they are lying to me LOL) surgery...the animal is out cold.
     
  9. Feral Nature

    Feral Nature Active Member

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    I used to be a legend (unto myself) for nice smooth round heads on my goats. I kind of liked disbudding. But I was ill this spring and was late disbudding several. So it is scur-land out here. It makes me sad looking at them. I am actually holding over two nice doelings because of their scurs. I am grading up my herd and these 2 girls are 75%. One I really like and she has the worst scurs, horn-like almost growing back into her head, no way to band them...darn!!!