Monday, March 03, 2008

Disbudding

Not everything is smiles and fun in raising goats. Sometimes there is pain and unhappiness, especially at dis budding time. To register our Nubian's the American Dairy Goat Assoc. requires we dis bud (burn their little horns off) them. Some can be horned and registered but if they are show goats they must be dehorned. Since our kids are descendants of a state champion show goat (Nitro) and we put that in our ads to sell our goats we need to disbud. We started out with a buzz cut around their little nubs.

This they didn't mind at all. The vibration seemed to lull them to sleep except Padro. He cried the whole time but only because he couldn't move around like he wanted to. Next I gave each one 2ml of owie ease, a herbal pain medication.
It doesn't taste that good but works really great for the pain they have to endure. We gave them an hour for the tincture to work and then we had to do what we really really dread doing. We had to heat up the dis budder. It looks like a curling iron with a hole on the end. It has to be super hot so it will burn the skull around the nub to stop it from growing. You also have to be extra careful not to leave the iron on the skull too long or it can cause brain damage. If you don't leave it on long enough then the nubs will grow into horns and will have to be surgically removed. This happened to us last year with Frosty Dan and Brown Robyn. William tests the iron's heat on a piece of wood to make sure its hot enough.
Then its time to dis bud the babies. I held the body still. Larry our handyman held the head and William did the dis budding. None of us liked our job and I kept my eyes closed while it was actually burning.
The kids cried a little but not as much as I expected. After all were done Mom checked them out, let them nurse and then they went to sleep. Later they were up running and playing like nothing had happened. The bad part is we have to do this again next week with Sammi's 4 kids. Anyone want to visit and help?

17 comments:

Rosie's Whimsy said...

I remember this job with calves on our dairy farm growing up....didn't like it either....Bless you heart :-) Rosie

PEA said...

As my mom use to say to me when she'd make curls with my hair and I'd cry because it felt like she was pulling my hair...you have to suffer to be beautiful! lol Poor little kids, I hurt all over inside at the thought of the disbudding...glad they didn't seem to be suffering too much afterwards but I can well imagine how much you dislike this job!! I think I'd go hide and cover my ears until it was all over with!!!! xoxo

City Mouse said...

So sorry you have to do that Peggy. I know it is something that needs to be done. I can image how rough it must be. It's nice to know they are up and romping pretty quickly though. Why exactly is it a requirement? Just so you don't have a bunch of goats going around horning people in the behind?

miss*R said...

oh no, I don't want to help, I remember when Brown Robyn was done, and my heart was hurting for him :(

Kristie said...

Aww poor little babies. I think I'll pass on helping. I had a hard enough time taking my boys in for their shots when they were babies and me and the nurses had to pin them to the table to get shots. LOL
At least you got one "batch" done, only one more to go. :) Good luck.

Marci said...

This was always the part we hated too. The smell was horrible as well. I am glad it is over with. You take good care of your goats, Peggy!!

Betsy aka 'the goat yoda' said...

What is Nitro's herd name? I can look him up on the adgagenetics site. I know Paula Gavitt too. (smile...) And what is your herd name? I looked in the 07' adga directory and couldn't tell....

I've never heard of 'owie ease'- where do you get it?

Nen said...

oh no! i am so glad i don't have to do that! must be a sigh of relief when you have girls!!

LivingTheLife said...

I remember having to do some of the same things growing up on a farm with my dad...who had to have almost every animal under the sun... we did everything from castrating cattle and hogs to bobbing tails on pups...no not too much fun...but indeed a necessity...I would help...but then I would head off to a remote area to cry my eyes out!

I cringed when my daughter got her ears pierced at 10 AND it was her idea...so no thank you...I'll just keep enjoying your little beauties here on the web...

They are all so CUTE!! Little darlins!!

Blessings...
Teresa

Lady P said...

Uh gee...I'd love to help but man, the laundry that is piling up over here! It sounds like, that as with all things, there are less than happy chores as well as the fun stuff. As you stated a necessary evil. "kids" of all types bounce back pretty good though. It sounds like the pain medication in advance helps to minimize discomfort to the little ones during the procedure and after.

I do not envy you going through this again with the other 4.

Hope said...

Hi Peggy,
First let me say thank you for your prayers. I'm doing better today and I know it's due to my dear friends like you praying for me. I really appreciate it.

Ok, now I have another, possibly dumb, question. Are the baby goats born with these little buds or do they grow after they are born? Just curious and very dumb about goats!! :o) Either way, that's gotta hurt! Ouch!

Love and Hugs,
Hope

Flip Flop Floozie said...

I think it sounds like it hurt you guys worse than it did the babies!! Poor things though. Sounds awful. We are in Illinois now and will be going to Northern Illinois tomorrow to our daughters house. It has been cold, freezing rain and snow. FUN!!
Sandy

Mary said...

I'll pass on this too Peggy - can I just come and cuddle them instead? Glad they bounce back fast - hope you do too!

Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

How are you a castrating young pigs?? Another distasteful farm task.

You will be forgiven by your wee charges.

Jeanette said...

Hi Peggy, I think ill pass on the invitation to help..I would be crying with them.At least they get a little sleep then there running aroung again,,,

Donna said...

Poor little dears!

Baba's Blog .. Babies Are Special said...

Hi Peggy, you are an amazing woman..it takes a strong person to raise goats and care so much about them as you do..Bless you and your sweet chargers....The kids are so cute.... hugs, Baba