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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a group of 7 retired dairy goats that I keep as companions and weed-eaters on our small farm. Long story short, I was given a nearly 1-year-old male and I need him castrated (quickly!) so that I can put him in with the girls.

He also is fully horned, which concerns me not because of the girls, but because he butts me when I am leaning down to clean the feed or water troughs and I am afraid I'm going to get hooked in the eye one of these days.

Advice please -- what's the safest way to castrate? (I should mention I have not found a goat-savvy vet anywhere near me, which is extremely frustrating, and I've never castrated any livestock myself.)

Recommendations on what to do about the horns?

He's really very sweet and follows me around like a dog. I'd like to be able to train him to harness (and thus justify to my husband why I rescued him instead of enjoying a BBQ). Any help greatly appreciated!
 

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best way to castrate him is the Burdizzo or surgically. see if there are any breeders in your area who may have contact for a vet to do it surgically or have a burdizzo

as to his horns - try taping tennis balls to them
 

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best way to castrate him is the Burdizzo or surgically. see if there are any breeders in your area who may have contact for a vet to do it surgically or have a burdizzo

as to his horns - try taping tennis balls to them
agree with Stacy, also for the horns if they arnt to large you can put elastrating bands around them. From our experience (Weve done it on 3 goats) Its like banding the boys chonies except that it digs into the horn and cuts off circualtion. Theyll pop off in a few weeks tops, and after the bands on its painless to them. :)
 

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7 does - 2 bucks - 1 wether
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agree with Stacy, also for the horns if they arnt to large you can put elastrating bands around them. From our experience (Weve done it on 3 goats) Its like banding the boys chonies except that it digs into the horn and cuts off circualtion. Theyll pop off in a few weeks tops, and after the bands on its painless to them. :)
Banding the horns is usually more painful than banding to castrate ... but I think the smaller the horn the easier on them.
 

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Goats of da UP
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agree with Stacy, also for the horns if they arnt to large you can put elastrating bands around them. From our experience (Weve done it on 3 goats) Its like banding the boys chonies except that it digs into the horn and cuts off circualtion. Theyll pop off in a few weeks tops, and after the bands on its painless to them. :)
I disagree with the bands being painless once they are on the horns. It takes quite a while, several weeks, for the bands to get far enough to stop any circulation. The entire time, they are putting pressure on the horns, which have strong blood circulation and pain receptors.

I banded my boer wether's horns. I had to keep him pumped up on banamine or he'd screech in pain if he so much as brushed his horns against something. He was in a great deal of pain after the bands went on, and stayed in pain until the horns managed to come off. He has always been a dramatic goat, but the panting, teeth grinding, and tone of his yells were not just normal drama.

And guess what? It didn't work! They started to grow back. I got the bands as far down as possible. I used several bands, each lower than the other, to the very part where the horns erupted from his head. But I am not putting him through that again. They're rather squared off now, and I'll just sand them so they stay blunt now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks to all for the quick and sincere replies. His horns are quite thick at the base, so I like the tennis ball idea rather than trying the banding.

As for the burdizzo, he must be at least 100 lbs at this point. I'm not sure how we could hold him down. Do you ever sedate your goats first? What's the chance that the procedure wouldn't work and he'd still be fertile?
 
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