How to dehorn 6 month old goat? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I bought two nubian goats the other day? Both are very cute and friendly. Which was important because i have very small children. One has horns about 3 to 4 inches long.I would like to dehorn her. I know this is supposed to be done when they are little. Is there any way to do it now? I have heard you can use Castrating bands to do it. I just wanted your input.

-- Toni in Utah (, September 26, 2001


Disbudding is done right after birth. Here are some great sites on dehorning. Do not let anybody talk you into surgical dehorning. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh TX (, September 26, 2001.

I had my 2 goats dehorned at the vets. One of my goats was 4 months old and the other was 8 months old. Having the goats dehorned was not a pretty sight. I felt really bad after having it done to them. However, I have 2 small children and after the bigger goat tried butting my toddler and my toddler getting butted at the goat farm I visited and getting injured (slightly) I felt I had to have them dehorned for my kids safety. Didn't want someone to lose an eye.

Personally I'll always make sure I buy goats that were disbudded as babies and if I breed my goats I'll have to learn how to disbud them myself or have the vet show me or hook up with a goat person to show me.

Also, when I had my goats dehorned at the vets I was told it would be $25 to dehorn the little one and no more than $45 for the bigger one. However, the vet then tacked on antibiotics, sedation fee, local fee, and a spray that I had to use on the horn area afterwards. None of the extra stuff was mentioned until I picked up the goats. So I was expecting a bill for $70 and ended up paying $130. A big difference when you are trying to watch your money. So if you decide to have the vet do it make sure there is NO hidden costs.

You may want to try the banding method that Vicki gave you the link too if you can wait that long for the horns to fall off.

-- anita (, September 26, 2001.

After looking at the site for the person in Canada who used the elastrator bands, I have to wonder if they are larger than what I used on my lambs--I surely don't think they would stretch that far-- would they? Are they using bands for calves or something? Looks promising, has anyone else used them? Jan

-- Jan in CO (, September 26, 2001.

I just wanted to say thanks for you input. We looked at those websites Vicki the were very helpful. We went any applied the bands today. I will keep you posted how it goes? And Jan they are the same bands you use for lambs. We have lambs and sheep also. Thank you again.

-- Toni in Utah (, September 27, 2001.

Make sure you have their tetnaus shots !!!! I personally would not buy a goat with horns. If I did, I would not have them taken off at that age. If they butted me or my human to the auction they would go. We have used the bands when they were past the horn burning stage with good luck. But yet again they were not very old either. Good Luck !!!

-- Helena (, September 28, 2001.

Oh!!! I bought 4 goats at a livestock auction, on a whim. (I thank god I did not buy the cow, too.)Of the two males. one was too frightened to get close. When mathilda had her (suprise) male baby) he seemed tather innocuos too. Now I have 1 female and one male with horns; they dont seem to be much of an issue....yet. The issue was the ferile uncastrated male, "82" When the other goats were not interested in his incessant advances, old 82 turned to the chickens. He developed a rather sizable harrum. But, then, he started to atteck the kids...Well, we decided he'd taste ok at thanksgiving, but decided to do a surgical castration first. a clean easy job, and I wonder if it will help th horned male one day in the future.

-- jackie rodzinski (, September 30, 2001.

I have had a doe surgically dehorned. It was not a pretty site and the surgery post-op care was AWFUL. But it worked. I do not know that I would do it again. (at the time I said NEVER again) But 1 year down the road~she is still sweet as ever and no horns! (but she looks weird without them. I guess we got used to them!)

-- Susan K. Lyons (, October 21, 2001.

I know that this is going to sound harsh, but I would butcher the goat. I have never seen a totally successful late dehorning. I've seen sinus infections a year later.. the head is everafter tender and vulnerable, and frankly, I'd rather quickly and mercifully kill an animal rather than traumatize it. In the early 70's I left horns on my kids because I thought is was "natural" (read dense hippy-brain). Well, it's "natural" in the wild.. not in a pen with other coats and children. After a doe I'd given away ripped another doe from her rectum through her vulva, I have religeously dehorned all of my goats, even the ones I plan to eat.

-- Ellen Wright (, October 27, 2001.

I once purchased a six month old doe in a herd deal who was not disbudded. Because of her poor condition I waited another six months to have her dehorned.[it is stressful]We used a wire saw and cut even with the poll, then cauterized the wound with a HOT disbudding iron,put antibiotic cream on it, and wrapped her head like she had a toothache.The open sinuses were very small and healed in about three weeks.I was very fortunate and everything went well, but I recomend disbudding as two weeks to everyone.It's ceaper, safer,and much better for the animal.

-- Kacy (, February 13, 2002.

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