Trimming rooster spurs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Dogfish, Jun 28, 2010.

  1. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

    Mar 17, 2010
    Western Washington
    Has anyone ever trimmed the spurs of their rooster to limit damage from an agressive attack?

    We inherited a rooster, had him quarantined for a few weeks, seems to be fine. Introduced him to the rest of the flock Saturday, including 16 laying hens of various breeds, 3 remaining 10 week old CX (2 hens and a roo), and two BBB turkeys that are 10 weeks old. All went well Saturday and yesterday, but today when I got home the 2 turkeys had received quite a flogging, with some bleeding on their heads, plus a few puntures. They have been treated and are doing well.

    The rooster was bleeding from his spur, looks like he chipped it, and the turkey had given a little back as he had a few dings of his own.

    The 2 turkeys and the 3 CX (all 5 were purchased the same day and were raised together) all retreated in a different direction from the roo and the other birds when I let them out of the run, so the roo probably beat them up in their side pen, based on the blood I saw.

    I know that some animals have teeth trimmed, and others have things done such as neutering them, but I want an active intact rooster. How would you trim spurs if you did do it? Dremel tool with a cutting wheel, or maybe a pair of pet "nail trimmers"? Just thinking of trimming them 0.25-0.375" to square them off.

    He isn't too happy with me right now, as I caught him in one of my salmon nets, flipped him upside down on his back wrapped in the net so he was completely defenseless, and growled at him, along the lines of how I maintain dominance with my dog. (luckily there was no video of this) He was in the net for about 5 minutes.

    This was the first act of aggression by any of my birds, other than basic sparring, so I'm looking to nip it in the bud if possible. If all else fails, I'll separate the CX and turkeys from the rest of the flock, as they will be harvested in the upcoming months. It was interesting to see the CX run as fast as they did, though.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. hipeatall

    hipeatall Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 2, 2009
    Not really the same situation... but, might be helpful.
    We recently used the "hot potato method" on one of our roosters spurs and it worked really well for us.
    This roo is a real sweet heart. We had to remove his spurs because he was having trouble running. Those spurs were soooo long he had to kindof wobble a bit to miss hitting his own legs with them... yikes!
     
  3. klnlehmann

    klnlehmann Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 25, 2007
    I has a super mean rooster a few years ago. We had an old farmer come over to trim. He said he did it all the time. He just used large dog nail trimmers.

    It did bleed a little. It didn't make him any nicer. Not sure if it was humaine. However, it left me in better shape when I had to go in the coop. If I had the same situation I would do it again in a second!

    Good luck
     
  4. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Jacksonville, Florida
    I use the hot potato also, works great!
     
  5. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

    Mar 17, 2010
    Western Washington
    Explain hot potato, please.
     
  6. DTchickens

    DTchickens Overrun With Chickens

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    Bailey, Mississippi.
  7. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

    Mar 17, 2010
    Western Washington
    Thanks much for the help!
     
  8. klnlehmann

    klnlehmann Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 25, 2007
    I have to say after looking at the site that nail trimmers did the same thing. It just didn't take as long. Guess it wasn't in humane!

    Good luck.
     
  9. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Nuke a potato in your microwave like your going to eat it. Put the hot potato on the spur without touching the leg, let it set there for one minute then remove the potato. Take your pliers and twist the outer spur off and your done. Do the same thing with the other spur with the same potato. There might be a little blood, just wipe it with iodine. You'll see the smaller spur which is bone and and has blood flow thru it...I dont recommend cutting that spur. Once the potato cools, give it to your rooster...he'll love you for it lol.
     
  10. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

    Mar 17, 2010
    Western Washington
    Thanks for the hot potato method.
     

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