Few people know that goats need to cut their hooves twice a year. This procedure is important for representatives of all breeds at any age. Trimming hooves for goats is a simple task, and with a certain skill it will not take much time.
- Why do I need to cut goat hooves?
- When to cut goat hooves?
- Hoof trimming tools
- Goat preparation for the procedure
- How to trim goat hooves
But you need to know how to do it correctly so as not to harm the animal. In the end, if you cut too close to the body, it can lead to blood poisoning and death of the pet.
Why do I need to cut goat hooves?
To cut the hooves of a domestic goat, you need to their constant growth. This is akin to human nails, if they are not trimmed, they stick into the skin, cling and in every way interfere with its owner.
In the wild, the stratum corneum of the hoof is erased when walking on stones and rocks. Pets do not have such an opportunity, especially in winter. When the goat hibernates in the barn on a soft bed, the hoof grows even more.
When the horns on the hooves grow, the animal begins to feel discomfort.Often this can lead to big problems:
- the wrapped horns of an overgrown hoof are often clogged with mud and dung, which becomes a favorable environment for the development of infections and other pathogens, and rotting of the hoof may begin;
- incorrect position of the legs with overgrown hooves leads to dislocation of the limbs and even their fractures;
- the gait of the animal is impaired, which affects the joints;
- lameness develops;
- due to improper positioning of the legs, the goat cannot drink and eat normally.
Alive other with overgrown hooves experiences pain and inconvenience when walking, moreover, it is more often in a supine position. This negatively affects the milk yield and general condition of the animal.
Such manipulation as trimming the hoof does not apply to the surgical type of treatment. But it still requires extreme caution and compliance, special rules.
When to trim the hooves of goats?
Trimming the hooves of domestic goats is carried out twice a year in late autumn and early spring. The importance of this procedure is undeniable. In autumn, the hooves are prepared for wintering on a soft litter and the inability to shave off the stratum corneum. In early spring, before the animal is brought out to pasture, the horns of the horns that have grown during the winter are removed.
A properly trimmed hoof should look like little goats, white and smooth. It is more convenient to prune if the animals walked in the wet snow or wet grass.In this case, the fatal layer swells and becomes more pliable.
Some livestock breeders replace the planned pruning by walking the herd on asphalt. Walking on a rough surface for at least one kilometer a day can be a good alternative to trimming.
Tools for trimming hooves
tool. You will need a special inventory to trim. It should be prepared in advance. Each breeder independently chooses a more convenient tool for their pets. If the person is carrying out the procedure for the first time, it is better to stock up on several options:
- Hoof trimming scissors are convenient in the trimming process. But when choosing it is worth paying attention to the length of the handle. Too short a handle will require more effort during the haircut, and a long handle, on the contrary, will facilitate the work.
- The hoofed knife is a convenient but dangerous tool. Not suitable for inexperienced breeders, as there is a high risk of injuring the hand during pruning if the goat pulls his leg.
- An ordinary knife should be very well sharpened, which also increases the likelihood of injury. The handle should be comfortable and fit well in the palm of your hand.
- The garden pruner copes well with the overgrown outer wall, but is not convenient for the inside of the hoof.
- Garden shears clean the overgrown part well, but it’s difficult to properly level the sole.
- Metal shears, if sharp, can quickly cope with even the most neglected case.
- A hacksaw for metal quickly and efficiently cuts off overgrown parts, it is important when working with it to firmly fix the goat so that it does not injure itself.
- Ordinary household scissors are convenient for removing small processes between fingers, but do not fit for clearing the whole hoof.
In practice, everyone chooses for himself th convenient tool. How long the trimming will take depends on the severity of the inventory and the breeder’s experience.
Preparing the goat for the procedure
For goats, trimming the hooves is stressful, especially for the first time . It is not recommended to carry out the procedure for pregnant females due to the threat of miscarriage. It is necessary to take care of her health before mating
If the goat has a calm disposition, then you can simply tie it with a rope and put it so that the rope on the neck is stretched. If the pet is excited or has a violent character, then it will have to be brought down on its side. To do this, you need an assistant, since one is unable to cope with this task. The goat needs to be pressed firmly to the ground. To calm her, you can stroke or treat her favorite treat.
It must be remembered that the animal can bite strongly in a stressful situation for him.The head should be located as far as possible from the person conducting the manipulations.
How to cut the hooves of goats
This procedure is not complicated, but requires some experience. If the breeder is faced with pruning for the first time, it is recommended to watch training videos, where the whole process is shown step by step.
The procedure must be performed carefully and as quickly as possible, so as to less stress the pet. The tool must be sharpened well before trimming the hooves. There is a certain sequence of actions:
- Dirt and manure are removed from under the ungulate horn. It is convenient to do this with a special hook. Using sharp objects at this stage is not recommended, so as not to harm the goat.
- The outer part of the growth is cut off. It is solid and it is easier to use hoofed scissors for removal. If the surface is too hard and the tool does not take it, then the hoof can be soaked in warm water using a bucket, bowl or pan.
- The heels are trimmed to the same level with your fingers so that the hoof in the future can correctly grow. It is better to start the procedure from the base of the heel.
- The base of the hooves is compared until it becomes flat and fairly even. As soon as the soft pink part becomes visible, the cropping must be stopped, because the blood vessels are already below.
- Both fingers should have the same shape so that the goat does not limp and does not fall over.
- after the procedure, the hooves are soaked in a solution of creolin or copper sulphate to disinfect the tissues and prevent infection.
- If there are signs of hoof rot, they must be thoroughly cleaned and trimmed.
If the hoof is trimmed correctly, then the goat stands on it at an angle of 45 degrees. During the procedure, blood vessels or soft tissues of the legs may be affected. This happens by mistake of the breeder, but you can correct the situation. To do this, the damaged area is treated with hydrogen peroxide, and then with iodine. The pet is transferred to a separate stall with dry litter until the wounds heal.
During cleaning and trimming of the hooves signs of hoof rot may be detected.
This is very dangerous for the animal, as it threatens problems with the musculoskeletal system. The sick goat is transferred to a separate paddock and provided with clean, dry litter and complete food. For the prevention of hoof rot, an infusion of goat willow is used. Hooves are soaked in it after cleaning and trimming.
Timely trimming of hooves allows you to maintain the health of pets, as well as increase milk yield. If the goat is bothered by hooves, then it will be milking much worse.Trimming hooves in adult goats is a preventative measure against leg diseases. To trim the hardened beginner, the bone tissue on the hooves should be deformed regularly.