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Old 02-28-2009, 05:51 PM  
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What age to disbud and castrate kids

I am hearing so many opinions on disbudding and castrating our baby goats and thought I would see what you all had to say. They where 2 weeks on friday and the little boy has good bumps for horns and the little girl has very small bumps. I was told to wait to castrate the boy till like 4 months to give his urethra time to grow so he doesnt have problems later with urinary calci something. I was also told that banding him for castrating is cruel. Oppinions appreciated. I am thinking of calling the vet monday and taking them in for dehorning next week.
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Old 02-28-2009, 06:15 PM  
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Disbudding, as I understand, should happen as soon as possible...if you have buds, they need to get burned. I don't disbud mine, so I'm not positive on that information.

I band mine at about 6 weeks. You don't want them to be too small and not dropped into the sack yet and you don't want them too large for the band, either. I usually do it before weaning and after their first vaccination. I do a tetanus booster, too!

Banding is the easiest and least invasive method, though often thought of as cruel since you are cutting off the blood supply to the area with a rubber band. People band cattle, too. They can be "gelded" like a horse, but that's very invasive and offers a big chance for infection. There's a method of snipping/pinching the tubes with a device called a Burdizzo that's supposed to be less painful than banding. However, you have to be able to clip/pinch the tube correctly or you run the risk of still having a billy goat! It's also hard to tell a wether is not a billy (in my opinion) when they've been "smushed."
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Old 02-28-2009, 08:18 PM  
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Oh, it's GOATS! Your title had me going there for a minute!
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Old 02-28-2009, 09:05 PM  
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I thought the same thing!
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Old 03-01-2009, 07:29 AM  
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Yeah I figured there might be some confusion at first I just figured now that I am a goat person I should talk the lingo....
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Old 03-01-2009, 10:14 AM  
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We disbud as soon as you can feel the horn bud- wait too long and you will either get scurs, or the disbudding will be unsuccesful and you will end up with horns.

We band our boys at around 8 weeks here.
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Old 03-01-2009, 10:56 AM  
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I disbudd at 24hours to a week, once in awhile I'll do it over that but never more than 2 weeks old. Rule of thumb is if I can feel a bump it gets disbudded. I disbudd once a week so thats how the 24 hour old goes into play. All kids are given an Anti-Toxin vaccination, disbudded, bluekoted and sent on thier way.

We castrate at 3-4 months normally. I prefer to cut/pull it's done it's fast , easy and the kids seem to recover much faster. In 10 years we've never had a death or any type of infection castrating this way. Again they are given a Tetnus Anti-Toxin vaccine and bluekoted. This has to be done much earlier than the 3-4 months though (4-6 weeks) because the ring between the scrotum and the abdomine gets larger to accomidate all the plumbing. If the opening is to large and you castrate it is possible for them to pass intestines through the opening. It is thought there is a great risk of Urinary stones the younger you castrate I myself have not found this to be true but it's one of those things that varries depending on who you ask. I have honestly castrated hundreds of lambs and goat kids this way with no problems.

Banding, I do if I need to castrate and Iam home alone. Rule of thumb is IF I can get a testicle through the band it will work. Of course the larger the testicle the longer it takes for the sac to dry up and fall off. Sometimes they have to go through one at a time but they will go. You need to be sure you don't pull down on the testicles when doing this because you can cause the urerthra (sp sorry Pee tube) to be pulled down and cut off by the band causing a urinary blockage and death. We have had multiple cases of rotting scrotal sacks using this method, it's recommended if the sac has not fallen off to cut it off at 7-10 days. This is by far NOT my choice of castrating in the summer time!! It does not take long for the sac to become really nasty in a Michigan summer. Of course Tetnus Anti-Toxin is given here as well

Clamping, I've only done a few(couple dozen), mostly the older bucklings, rams or bucks get done this way as it's safer. BUT it has it's draw backs as well. If done wrong you still have a buck. You have to have a good holder, if they loose grip you will get kicked in the face and that hurts!! It is possible they will hemorage internally due to the clamp not being held on long enough. In my thought this is the most difficult, time consuming and invasive of all the castrating types. If it's done right the sac should feel empty in a few weeks....yep the best way to tell is to grab the scrotum and feel the testi it's pretty clear if they dead or not.

Karen
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Old 03-02-2009, 05:56 PM  
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We disbud our goats at about 3days to 2 or three weeks old.
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