Today is a goat fact that we get asked about often… Disbudding.
Disbudding is when a baby goat’s horn buds are burned off to prevent them from growing a full set of horns. Kids are generally disbudded within the first week of their life. This may sound cruel, but it is important to the goat’s health, as well as the health of it’s herd mates and caretakers. Goats with horns will run into many problems. They can easily get stuck in fencing, which can strangle them or leave them open to predators. They can also hurt or even kill their herd mates or caretaker. It is quite dangerous to have a goat with horns around (I have heard many stories). Especially on dairy goat farms where goats are handled so much on a daily basis.
Our farm vet disbuds our kids for us. This was not a procedure that I wanted to do on my own. She does it under anesthesia. The goats wake up about 30 minutes after the procedure acting totally normal. I have never had a problem with the goats acting like they were in pain or even phased by being disbudded.
So while this isn’t a procedure that we look forward to it’s important to the health of our herd that it is done.
Fias Co Farm has done an amazing job explaining the importance of disbudding – Check out THIS article.