What should I do about a goat that should have been dehorned

Discussion in 'Goat Frenzy' started by zcs, Aug 9, 2010.

  1. zcs

    zcs New Member

    Apr 5, 2010
    I have a 7 month old male nubian/boar, when my boyfriend brought him home he was around 3 months and I was told by a vet this was too late to dehorm him without taking him to the vet office for surgery. So I figured ok we'll leave the horns, however now he is starting to get ruff with my other two dehorned goats, i'm concerned about them getting hurt by his horns. I've heard with cattle some people saw off their horns if they were not dehorned. Is this something that might work for a goat? Should I be concerned about him hurting my other goats?
  2. PznIvyFarm

    PznIvyFarm New Member

    Jul 25, 2010
    Re: What should I about a goat that should have been dehorne

    We had our Bailey dehorned at 1 yo earlier this year. It was $75 at the vet, and well worth every penny. Last night when i was holding her while the vet tried to get the kid out, my face was right near the top of her head, and whenever she struggled, i thought it was a great decision we had made to have her dehorned. Plus our kids, nieces, nephews, etc are always in the pen with the goats, and I don't worry as much about someone being seriously injured. (JMO of course, i know many people don't mind/prefer the horns)

  3. sweetgoats

    sweetgoats Moderator

    Oct 18, 2007
    Peyton CO.
    Re: What should I do about a goat that should have been deho

    I know a lot of people that leave the horns on their buck, and dehorn the does. I would NEVER EVER take the horns off a goat that old. They go straight to the brain. They are nice to have something to hold on to.

    All my goat shave horns and I have been hurt by them once and it was totally my fault. You just learn to respect them and know they are there.
  4. zcs

    zcs New Member

    Apr 5, 2010
    Re: What should I do about a goat that should have been deho

    Do you know if the people who leave the horns on their bucks but dehorn the does have ever had a doe injured by the buck's horns?
  5. sweetgoats

    sweetgoats Moderator

    Oct 18, 2007
    Peyton CO.
    Re: What should I do about a goat that should have been deho

    NO. I know a lot of people that have horned and dehorned goats together all the time. remember the horns are there to protect them fro predators. The ONLY goats I ever have that have ever used their horns on one another is bucks in rut.
  6. glenolam

    glenolam New Member

    Jul 20, 2010
    Canterbury, CT
    Re: What should I do about a goat that should have been deho

    I have 9 goats total - 4 goats with and 5 goats without horns. 2 of the horned goats are kid does, so they don't yet know they have horns to use, but the other 2 are 1 1/2 and 2 yrs old. They know their horns are there and that the others don't have them, but they've never used them forcefully against the other hornless goats. I have even seen 1 of them use their horns to scratch places on their backs that normally can't be scratched...

    IMO I wouldn't dehorn him unless it was a personal preference to do so. Some people band older goats with horns, but that can lead to a big bloody mess and no garuantee the horns will remain gone.
  7. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Re: What should I do about a goat that should have been deho

    Personally, I prefer horns on my goats BUT it is required that Registered Dairy goats are disbudded IF they are to be shown, so 2 of my adults are bald and any registered kids born will be too. I have 2 horned boys in with my bald buck and believe me, Chief can hold his own.. 5 of my six does have horns and my baldy Binkey holds her own too. I do take precautions by using Duct Tape on them if I see anyone getting too agressive towards kids...it's all in how you view horns, respect is needed when having horned goats.

    If he's getting too rough with the others just be watchful that he truly isn't hurting them and feeding each in a separate area helps too as well as having enough hay racks to avoid the food agressive behavior.

    DO NOT attempt to cut off his horns...he would bleed to death and the pain/stress it caused would kill him.
  8. Gumtree

    Gumtree Lurking Aussie

    Aug 15, 2009
    S.E. Qld Australia
    Re: What should I do about a goat that should have been deho

    I'm going to throw a spanner in the works if you know what that means :oops:
    There is the option of banding horns....I just did a 2 1/2 year old doe no problems,
    you use elastrator bands (the ones used for castration )
    place 2 bands at the very base of the horns and wait about 2-3 weeks, then they will drop off like a tail, when this happens, place some antibacterial stuff, ( like you would do for any cut on it) and make sure it does not get wet till it's completely healed up (otherwise it will get fly-blown ) it can be a bit messie when it falls off for a few days though,

    it is a do at your own risk though -like a lot of things :)
  9. elchivito

    elchivito Active Member

    Apr 18, 2010
    Re: What should I do about a goat that should have been deho

    First, you can't cut off a goat's horns like you can with cattle. Bovine and caprine horns are not the same.
    For various reasons we've had three does surgically dehorned by our vet over the years. It leaves quarter sized holes in the top of their heads for quite some time, two or three months before they close up. This opening leads directly to their sinus cavities, not their brain. As a result, you must keep them wrapped and make sure that no water gets into the holes. They can actually drown if caught in a downpour. It's also not advisable to do this during fly time for obvious reasons. In spite of the hassles, if done well it leaves a beautiful head with no scur growth. Our vet sedated the goats and used a wire saw and cauterized as he cut. There was considerable bleeding. It cost about 175 bucks a pop. Your mileage may vary.
    In my opinion, all your goats should have horns, or none of them. A goat with horns KNOWS he or she has them and will use them to their advantage against others who are not horned. The only time I've seen this work well is putting a horned wether in as a companion to a dehorned buck. The wether's horns acted as a perfect deterrent to the buck's natural tendency to be more agressive, horns or not.
    I would have him dehorned by a competent vet who is conversant with the risks associated with sedating goats. Many vets simply won't sedate a goat because the margin of error is so slim with them.
    Another possibility is to find a way to make the horns less dangerous. You can put a glob of duct tape on the sharp ends, or tennis balls or something, but that requires constant montioring as what ever you stick on there will come off in short order.
    If I lived in the middle of nowhere I'd figure the predator argument was valid, but even though we have a resident Mountain Lion in our neighborhood, horns are still not a good idea.
    Just my 2 Cents......
  10. myfainters

    myfainters New Member

    Oct 29, 2009
    Lancaster, CA
    Re: What should I do about a goat that should have been deho

    Absolutely YES a horned goat CAN hurt a hornless goat fairly easily. I've seen a horned goat GUT a dehorned goat... does this always happen NOPE.... but it is a possibility. I had my horned buck in with my disbudded boys up until 2 days ago.... went outside and heard my Tonka boy screaming and Ryder had him hooked under the belly and was literally carrying him around. Needless to say he is now in a pen all by himself... if he can't play nice... he'll have to live alone until he goes to his new home at the end of the month. :)

    If his horn base is small enough I'd recommend banding.... if it's already too big for a standard sized band then I'd just give him his own pen NEXT to your disbudded boys... then he still has company and you don't have to worry about your other boys getting hurt. :)