When to band a male pig?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Hapigrl, Dec 25, 2013.

  1. Hapigrl

    Hapigrl Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 12, 2012
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    Hi guys. this may be too late, but this is our first pig and we are kinda on our own here. We have a male Hampshire mix. He is now 6 moths old and growing fast. I know that he should have been castrated when new got him, but he was only 3 days old because his mother wouldn't feed her babies. My question is, will testicles fall, like other male animals? I mean he has them and you can see them, but they are up close to his body. Are we supposed to band them like they do cows? And how do we do that if they are so tucked up? I know if it is still possible to do this we will have to sedate him, he is large and is very friendly with my hubby, but lets face it, this is not going to be easy or pleasant!! Any advise would be very much appreciated. My hubby has worked way to hard on his care and building a pen very quickly for this meat to be awful!! Thanks so much, this site is so great!
     
  2. buttercup95

    buttercup95 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You don't band them, you have to cut them out. It's totally normal for them to be close to his body and most people castrate them long before six months. I've never had to castrate them personally. Normally my neighbor does it for me and I hold the legs out.
     
  3. Hapigrl

    Hapigrl Out Of The Brooder

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    St Augustine, Florida
    Thank you so much for replying, but oh god that is not what I wanted to hear! lol! There is no way in the world my hubby is gonna do that. He has come to terms with culling chickens, but this duty he will draw the line at. And I don't have the stomach for it myself. CRAP! We were not ready for a pig when new got this one, but the opportunity came up and we went for it. Man, I do not know what to do....[​IMG]
     
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    At this age you might well need a vet to do the procedure. Those are going to be some good sized incisions! Cutting young piglets isn't that big a deal, we did it in 4-H, just us kids and the Ag teacher walking us through it. I'm thinking your big guy is going to need to be sedated, I'm not sure how else you could restrain a pig that size.

    Are you planning on keeping him for a pet? Oh, just re-read your post and you plan to butcher him? I'm thinking it's too late to cut him, he's at butcher age now. I think the meat you got now is what you're going to get. I'd butcher him ASAP to keep any further hormones from flavoring the meat. The stress of castration, waiting for him to heal, how long would it take the hormones to clear the meat, if they ever would, plus the stress on the pig from being sedated, and the expense---I think you missed that boat and will just learn for next time.
     
  5. Hapigrl

    Hapigrl Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 12, 2012
    St Augustine, Florida
    Thank you very much for that advice. I think you have a very correct opinion. Butchering right seems to be the right thing to me to. I know people usually want them to be 250 or so. He is not. He is probably, just guessing, around 150 or so. I do not want him to be in pain or stressed out at all. Maybe we should feed him corn out for 3 weeks and just call the butcher. So now the question is.......if we do that what do we have the butcher do? Someone said he will only make good sausage and pepperoni now! UGH!
     
  6. cassie

    cassie Overrun With Chickens

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    You can't believe everything you hear. We butchered a boar hog that was a LOT bigger than yours and the meat was just fine. I have heard about boar meat and how bad it is but I still don't know. As I said, there was nothing wrong with the pork from that pig and he dressed out at about 250 pounds. I thought he weighed 250 pounds on the hoof. I never could estimate the live weight of hogs. I suspect that if the boar is mature there may be a problem. Ours was young. Big, but young. The reason the pig wasn't castrated was because we kept putting it off. It wasn't long before he was so big we didn't even want to try.
     
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    If he's six months and only 150, you've not been feeding him near enough. I think he's probably bigger than you think, pigs'll fool you about their weight. I always think mine are smaller than they really are.

    From what Cassie said, I'd just have him butchered with regular cuts. Maybe talk to your butcher, see what his experience has been. Since he's not been exposed to females or been sexually active, you may be good to go.

    Nothing like your own fresh pork!
     
  8. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

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    Definitely at this point, it would be dangerous to castrate him yourself. Even experienced people have difficulty castrating pigs once they are more than a week or so old.

    150 pounds is not uncommon. (Maybe for that age, but I agree he may be fooling you with his weight) Many of the pigs where I live are butchered at that weight. Non-castrated pigs might have some boar-ish taste, but I've heard different things regarding that. Some people notice it and others do not.

    Next time you buy a pig though, have it castrated right away. You can do it yourself if you feel confident. At a day or two old, vets will (almost) never use sedation or anesthetic.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2013
  9. Hapigrl

    Hapigrl Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 12, 2012
    St Augustine, Florida
    Thanks everyone! you have helped soooo much! I am relieved to hear we may be ok with this meat. And as a few pointed out, I am sure that I am guessing lower on his weight than I should. He is HUGE to me, but I have no frame of reference! I think he probably is closer to butcher weight, maybe 210 or 220 now that really look. Trust me this guy has NOT gone underfed lol! So, now that this question has been answered I have a couple more. Do we HAVE to deworm him? If so, I want do it asap to get him to butcher in about a month. Also, I saw someone that said they feed only corn for the last 3 weeks, what purpose does that serve? You guys ROCK! Thanks again.
     
  10. cassie

    cassie Overrun With Chickens

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    Personally, if you are going to butcher him shortly I wouldn't bother to deworm him. And I would feed him a regular hog finishing ration. Corn is a good feed, but it is not a complete feed. It is short on protein among other things.
     

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