Opinions on disbudding/leaving intact

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Cara, Jan 14, 2009.

  1. Cara

    Cara Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2007
    My doe still hasn't kidded, but i'm torn about whether or not to disbud the kids. I only plan on keeping one buck from her (fingers crossed she has one), any others I will sell. They'll be Sable kids, and i'll have some Nubian/Saanen kids in the spring.

    I understand the practical reasons, but the thought of disbudding just doesn't sit right with me (like declawing, docking and so on). I'd really appreciate your opinions (but please no arguing!).
  2. Godsgrl

    Godsgrl Ostrich wrangler

    Aug 27, 2007
    at the zoo usually
    I kinda think it's cruel, but would do it, and this is why. My friend had a buck and doe. Her buck attacked me viciously, and I was bruised almost to bleeding from my hip to my ankle. The physical wounds healed, but I am afraid of goats now, especially bucks. Horns can do incredible damage, take them off!
  3. bheila

    bheila Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2008
    Kent, Wa
    I personally don't want my goats dehorned. I like knowing that my goats can defend themselves if I'm not around, god forbid. My goats like to remind the dogs that they are not play toys. I also like that it gives me something else to hold onto besides a collar. Would you send your declawed cat outside to fend for itself? Just my 2 cents [​IMG]
  4. helmstead

    helmstead Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2007
    Alfordsville, IN
    I am personally against it...but still have learned to do it. I had to in order to satisfy two things - showing rules and scared people.

    You can see on our website that I offer disbudding - and will disbud any kid that is for sale and hasn't been deposited on to improve saleability. A depositor has the right to ask for horned or disbudded kids. Last season - all but one kid (out of 6) were disbudded by request. This season we have had 5 kids already. One was retained, and we left his horns because we like our horned goats. The other 4 who have sold - the new owners requested they keep their horns. It's just a personal preference.

    There are people who stand staunchly on both sides. I've found this to be rediculous. There are good points to each side, and so learn how...have the equipment you need and be ready to go either way.

    Disbudding really isn't as bad as I thought it would be. It takes less than 30 seconds to do, the kids recover quickly.

    I will say that I will disbud ALL of my large breed kids. My Nubian doe, Scarlett, broke my nose the first week I had her (accidentally)...and she is disbudded. I can't IMAGINE the damage she might have done had she had horns. So, the tall ones on my farm will be disbudded...period. They can reach my face too easily!
  5. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

    Apr 22, 2008
    I plan on disbudding (or actually having it done since I don't have the equipment), our kids. I don't want to have goats with horns with my kids, or frankly even my dog around. Our property is small and completely fenced so that there is no way any predator that can harm a goat, other than a human, will be getting in. If I felt my goats needed their horns to protect themselves, I would leave them. Where we are now though, they have no need for them and I feel they would be more of a liability.
  6. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    if you dont want the risk of anything/anyone getting hit by a horn..i would get it done....accidents WILL happen with goats and horns!!.... and it dosent always have to be a fresh buck either....it can be a friendly/bottle baby..that just tossed her head at the wrong moment..*this almost happend to my foster son*...she almost got him in the eye..he was holding her on his lap.....she tossed her head up...just being a silly goat!....it was VERY close! and it made me realize how dangerous horns can be if you have close contact with your goats,...as we do.....and...as for them using them for defense....trust me...if a predator is BIG enough to take on a goat....the horns wont help much at all.....think deer and coy dogs...good luck!..its totally a personal choice...but...i know...all my goats will ALWAYS be disbudded when they are tiny kids....[​IMG]
  7. Thunderhill

    Thunderhill Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 8, 2008
    North Alabama
    We disbud all of ours unless requested in advance by the reservations. I have pulled too many goats out of fences, stuck with horns. Thanks goodness I never lost one due to hanging itself but boy....it is scary....not to mention the bumps and bruises.....and the times I've watched my horned goats go up under the belly of another goat while playing or fussing...I am always afraid someone is goingto get gutted...those horns get sharp!
    I hate to disbud them but I feel its necessary if I am going to keep confined, fenced goats.
  8. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    I have 2 goats with disbudding gone wrong by the people I got them from. The scurs are nasty, often bleed and cause discomfort. My biggest doe gets scabs over the places where her horns would be. She rubs at your jean pockets to scratch and will rub until you think your rearend will catch fire.

    I have 2 bucks and a nigi that have retained their horns.

    Handling the horned goats is not any different from handling the disbudded ones. It is YOU that has to learn to pay attention to the horns and the goat's heads.

    I don't plan to disbud any of the kids born this spring.

    Also in our county, so many people refuse to disbudd the local 4H has loosened its grip on disbudding and kids are allowed to show their horned goats. [​IMG]

  9. Cara

    Cara Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2007
    I have a buck pasture (a long long way from the doe pen!), and don't plan on making too much of a pet of them so handling will be minimal. I've planned on keeping a buckling from each doe, and using them to breed the other doe (ie. Dizzy's kid to breed Rose, and Rose's kid to breed Dizzy). Dizzy and Rose are not related, but are bred to the same buck currently.

    If I was going to keep any does I think it would be a different matter, since I have two disbudded does that I handle several times a day, and they are in a smaller area. That and the horns/milking stand problem. I guess what it comes down to is whether I sell disbudded kids or horned. Agghhh I just don't know! They do seem to have a lot of feeling in their horn area, as much as they want it petting and scratching, but i'd feel horrible if someone's child was hurt as a result. I suppose it's up to them to be careful though, I can't look out for everyone.
  10. reallemons1

    reallemons1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 31, 2008
    Gloucester, VA
    IMO, there is no real right or wrong, just whatever works in each situation. Consider pasture size, fencing type, herd size, pasture mates , and potental predators. Dehorning is painful, but only a very short while and sometimes necessary for a better life. As for my goats dehorning works best. I had one who used his horns to destroy fence, butt the horses and a few other things. One kept getting stuck in the fence. The goat will be fine eather way.

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