De Horning Calves

Cauterizing the growth ring or horn bud of a newly born calf

We’ve had two new born calves this month. Not all of them planned pregnancies if I’m honest. One of our cows is a little promiscuous and escaped into the bull’s field a little earlier than we planned. I blame the parents myself!

The picture above shows how we stop the cows growing horns by cauterizing the growth ring or horn bud. This is done while their still young and before the horn has had a chance to attach to the skull. The calf is first injected with a local anesthetic so although the process doesn’t look or smell very nice the calf doesn’t seem to feel too much pain. Most farmers favor de horning their cows as it limits the obvious danger posed to handlers and other cows.

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