I Hate Horns!

Discussion in 'Goat Frenzy' started by Sybil, May 22, 2008.

  1. Sybil

    Sybil New Member

    140
    Dec 21, 2007
    Rainier, Oregon
    I have never banded horns. Sounded easy. But really is a 2 man job as you need to file or saw notch in base of horn and then try to get the band on. Well..................the first scur came off beautifully. The other scur that really needed to come off took 3 tries. Last weekend I went out to feed and Chaos was covered in dried blood!! Only his head and at least it had clotted and he had not bled to death. Don't really know if they could. So now I have a 6 week old doe kid whose was disbudded and one horn bud is growing...............I didn't know how large it had gotten until I went to disbud her. Was a saw and burn job. Hope I got it!!! Never happens to the wether. I HATE HORNS!
    Sue
     
  2. jBlaze

    jBlaze New Member

    254
    Oct 9, 2007
    Oregon
    I hate horns too.
    I hate it when a vet doesn't get it right and you have to do it again.
    I hate it when, well, grrrrrr!
     

  3. sweetgoats

    sweetgoats Moderator

    Oct 18, 2007
    Peyton CO.
    I do totally understand, but I guess when your goats have to have horns then you do not thinks twice about them.
    I would think that dis budding would be very hard and yes you always have that chance of the horn coming back.
     
  4. goathappy

    goathappy New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Illinois
    Usually we only have problems with scurs on bucks and squirmy kids. When you disbud, you have to make sure you hold it on long enough to make sure you get a good burn. We clip the heads on our kids to see what we are doing, then for girls we count to 6 ie, one thousand and one, one thousand and two, etc. And for boys we count to 5 on each side, then we let it cool and do 5 more seconds on each side. It works great. :)
     
  5. cjpup

    cjpup New Member

    417
    Dec 1, 2007
    TX
    Just hearing you talk about it makes me wince........ :worried: :cry:

    CJ
     
  6. kelebek

    kelebek New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    South Texas
    I do about the same time on the disbudding as you do - the only difference is is that I was told to lightly burn in the middle of the two horn buds on the males for their scent glands to help with the stentch!
     
  7. enjoytheride

    enjoytheride New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Humboldt Co Ca
    I have disbudded any doeling I am thinking about keeping as horns can cause some nasty injuries. But reading here about the breaking off of horns, there seems to be a possible yuck-owie factor with disbudding or not disbudding.
    I think that because I don't have a huge area for the girls to roam, they are safer disbudded. So I do- but the buckings going to freezer camp- well I believe in letting them have a long of a stress free life as I can so no disbudding or wethering.
     
  8. gnomes'n'goats

    gnomes'n'goats New Member

    131
    Oct 8, 2007
    Under a mushroom
    We press the iron down straight on the kids head for 10 seconds each bud, then ten seconds each bud, rolling the side of the iron over the top until the bud is flat.
    Very unpleasant but it looks like this is the first year we don't have to reburn!
     
  9. jBlaze

    jBlaze New Member

    254
    Oct 9, 2007
    Oregon
    I don't care how nasty or awful disbudding is, it is SO much better than having a horn break off or later de-horning!
    Why would a goat 'have to have' horns? I must have missed something. just wondering.
     
  10. all1965

    all1965 New Member

    381
    Oct 6, 2007
    AR
    I believe it is a rule for Cashmere goats to have horns in the show ring? Am I correct?
    The horns allows the Cashmere goats to scratch there backs and release heat trapped in their coat and cool down. Otherwise they would overheat. I think im getting this right.

    I will never disbud. I could never bring myself to burn a kids head and possibily boil its brains.
    I breed for polled goats but I will not disbud. I seem to hae more trouble with polled kids getting their head stuck in the fence worse than the horned kids. At least once the horns get so big they can't get their head through the fence but I have a 6 month old polled buckling who can still get his head through. He got his head stuck once and when I found him he was gurgleing and we had to cut the fence!
     
  11. cjpup

    cjpup New Member

    417
    Dec 1, 2007
    TX
    I dont want to start an argument or try to "convert" anyone to not disbud but I feel that the opinions should atleast be presented. SO...here are the reasons I do not disbud any of my animals:

    How are they supposed to protect themselves from any kind of p[reditor? Even your own LGD could suddenly flip one day and decide your animals are no longer family but prey.

    Also, horns act as a goats radiator. THey help to regulate the goats temperate and activate sweat gland in extreme heat as well as warming mechanisms in extreme cold. This is an essential for goat survival expecially when you live in an area with a wide array of weather like here in Texas.

    As all1965 stated, the heavier haird goats need a way to scratch themselve to release air and heat from in there coats.

    Even a lightly hair goat will need to scratch. Without horns, they will rub against something to get this scratch and could increase the chances of absesses.

    Can you imagine the PAIN of going through the process of disbudding? I mean you are litterally putting a fired iron on their heads. How would you like that?

    Our number 1 reason is that its just not natural. Goats are born with horns (well except for polled but that took years and years of special breeding to obtain) they serve a perpose. If they didnt serve a purpose, they wouldnt have them. I know the reply to this part will be 'but goats are born intact yet you wether them.' This is very true and yet still a necessity to keep the population down and the quality of our animals depends on it.


    These are just my opinion and I realize that everyone does things in all different ways and things that work for one farm dont work for the next. Please dont take this as an argument or anything maliciouse, I just think its a great discussion to have if it can be done in a mature manner.

    CJ
     
  12. heavenlyhaven

    heavenlyhaven Senior Member

    627
    Apr 16, 2008
    Belmont, NY
    when i had grade goats my statement was
    "God made the goats with horns and He is infinetly more wise than I."
    now i have reg goats and want to be able to sell them
    so i have to dehorn
    this is my first year ever
    i cried for hours
     
  13. all1965

    all1965 New Member

    381
    Oct 6, 2007
    AR
    Because you have to dehorn to show or be able to really sell dairy goats, I decided not to go into Dairy breeds.
    I raised Fainters and there are no show rules about you have to disbud. Alot of breeders don't. There are a few that do but that is their decision and its not a requirement.

    I also hate scurs and it seems like alot of the goats I see that were disbudded have some kind of scur. It seems silly to put them through that kind of pain and then not do it right or effective enough.
     
  14. Di

    Di Crazy Goat Lady

    Jan 29, 2008
    central PA
    Well, I have both. Cashmeres have their horns (little Dharma, though, is now a Uni-horn, due to her recent fight with the fence). The Pygoras and Nigerians are disbudded. I just disbudded my first kid without the vet yesterday. Hubby helped! Since I'd seen it before I was "OK, it has to be done". He was a little freaked at first. But, as soon as he saw the kid OK and playing 5 minutes later he calmed down. I have to say that there are good arguments on both sides. Unhorned is great, grandkids can play with the goats without worry on my part. Feeding my horned goats is like "running the gaunlet"! I prepare, I always wear sunglasses or eye shields when I work with the Cashmeres. Haven't had a horned goat even act like they were going to use their horns against me, and they make a great handle. But, would I purchase a Niggy with horns? No. Why? Because I don't want to worry about my grandkids playing with the small goats (accidents happen, I won't take a chance with my children). And, I eventually want to show them. So, I guess I go with what is "traditional".
     
  15. enjoytheride

    enjoytheride New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Humboldt Co Ca
    I think the real problem is that we don't have a safe and painless method of disbudding. I think that putting a hot iron on a kids head is awful too. But in the goats are permanent residents, they need to be hornless. Even the small horns that I leave on the bucklings have injured me- I saw the vet with a giant black eye- goat with horn that she thought was too sick to throw her head around and wasn't. She was a fraction of an inch of losing her eye. I certainly do not want to have one of my goats torn up by a horned goat either.
    I have been reading about "popping" the horn bud off newborns at birth but I haven't known anyone who did this and I'm afraid to try it myself without guidance. You basically cut the skin above the horn but and it supposedly comes out easily as it is not yet attached.
     
  16. goathappy

    goathappy New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Illinois
    Our boer goats have horns and our dairy goats don't of course, they are housed separately. Our hornless dairy does can do as much damage to the dogs as the horned goats(actually they are a lot meaner!!) There are fight and flight animals; goats tend to be flight because they are prey not predator. Not many goats will try and fight something that is trying to eat them, unless they have babies. The mothers are extremely protective of the babies, but other that :shrug:

    Actually I believe it is the horn themselves that act as a radiator. In the summer the goat's horns always feel cool, and in the winter they are always warm. Sweetgoats could clear this up, but in the CSC somebody asked about putting oil on peeling horns and Lori said that by doing this you can overheat a goat because they have no way of cooling themselves down, so I assume its just the horns that keep them cool. Otherwise, for hornless goats, they cool down like a dog would, by panting and sitting in the shade.

    Of course it hurts but everything we do we do it out of love for our goats. We disbud not only because it is a lot easier to sell them that way, but also because: 1. dehorning is even more horrible and more painful(check out this link if you want to see dehorning: http://www.sandylanedairygoats.com/dehorning.htm) 2. so they don't get their heads stuck in the fence(LaManchas are not always the brightest goats) and 3. to prevent injury to extremely important milking udders. A torn up udder is NOT pretty or fun. I remember a while ago(this was on GW) a member had her goat get her head stuck in the fence and a dog came along and ate her head(I almost threw up at that one) and I would never want that to happen to my goats, or to the people that I sell goats too.

    The Boer goats are left with horns because that is just to many kids to disbud and they don't really have a tendency to stick their heads through things.

    Actually I think that being polled is just a recessive gene, not that goats were bred for it. I know some breeders do(like all1965 and I know a couple others) but breeding polled on polled usually(not all the time) results with hermaphrodites.

    Never did never will, I just like to debate :)
     
  17. all1965

    all1965 New Member

    381
    Oct 6, 2007
    AR
    I breed for polled goats but I do NOT breed polled to polled becasue of the increased risk of hermaphrodites.
    I breed my polled buck to my horned does and my horned buck to my polled does.
    I like have the chance to get polled goats in case a buyer prefers them. My horned kids sell just as good as my polled kids. Actually I havn't had anyone request either kind. They just like the goat and get them.

    I house both my polled and horned goats together. They get along fine and the polled ones are usually the leaders and meaner.
     
  18. hornless

    hornless New Member

    326
    Oct 5, 2007
    Reallly dislike horns. I even prefer the hornless look, the horns look ugly to me. Plus they can be dangerous and are not actually that effective in the case of an attack- if a dog or other predator wants to hurt/kill your goat, it will, regardless of horn status! One of my friends had a dog attack her goats back in '06, she had a herd of horned and polled grade pygmies..one polled doe survived. The horned animals actually had greater injuries inflicted upon them than the polled ones did? And of course pregnancies are more hazardous. My old pygmy doe was rammed often by her horned herdmates (I boarded her at a friends) and she miscarried.

    I have Nigies now, and will not consider horns. And hornless sells much, much quicker and for better prices than horned, in all dairy breeds. Grades too.
     
  19. liz

    liz Active Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Since this is more of a "opinions vary" type subject....I have always had horned goats until I bought a polled Reg Nigi and a disbudded buck...Never had a polled kid born til this year and the baldies get along just fine with the horned ones, never had an aggressive goat that used horns on me or tried to with any one else. Actually, I think the baldies look as "funny" as the LaMancha breed ....only because they lack what I am used to seeing...horns and ears!

    I have never had a problem selling horned kids either, most people want them with horns and they can see how my girls look and want the same look with their kids....as far as safety goes it is all in RESPECT for the horns, don't play with a kids horns and they won't "play" with you with them...always have appropriate fencing for a horned goat, I learned that the cheap welded wire does not keep a buck where he should be because he will use his horns to his advantage by beating the fence down and make sure the type of fence or in my case panels have small squares to prevent heads from getting stuck. Aggression towards other goats especially during feeding time and rut is NATURAL in any animal, which is why I make sure I don't just dump feed and leave, I stay til they are done and are content enough to scatter to the pasture...rut is another story, the smaller boys know when they are beat and pretty much don't get too close to the head buck.

    Horns are beautiful on a goat...in my opinion they look very regal with them. I absolutely love how my pygmy buck looks with his and my eldest doe with hers.

    This year was the first time I gave the option for dis buds on kids, one owner chose to have it done because of safety for a small child, the other was my choice because the kid was to be living with her polled sister..and I really didn't want to see "bullying" happening with the new owner....not something I would do often and it was a horrible experience for me, though the kids seemed more upset about being held down...I just cannot ever do it myself.

    Opinions on this are really great to read, I enjoy each one and everyone has great reasons through experience as to why they do or don't dis bud....those of you that do...you definately have to have the stomach for it...I don't