Monday, 5 April 2010


I'm always striving to find the most humane methods for dealing with animals. I figure we're intimate enough with our sheep (leave the kiwi/sheep jokes right where you found them)to know when their behinds need a trim to keep away dags, flies, and their cute little white offspring. So their tails stay on. But with three boy goats born this year, and only one requiring the continued use of his testicles I had to come up with a better method than the elasticator to castrate them.

Ramses, the black sheep became pointlessly named after his run in with the elasticator. I watched the process with dismay. He was in obvious pain for some days.

I did a bit of research and found the burdizzo, which is a large hand held clamp used to crush the blood vessels leading to the testicles. The device is bloodless, so little chance of infection, and it's painful for a short period only. We used it on Chalk and Cheese. I held the poor fellows down, Trev gave them the squeeze, the squawked, got up, walked away and within minutes were eating again and giving us wary looks. It'd be nice to let them stay intact, but intact boy goats smell horrendous and don't make good pets, which is what Chalk and Cheese are.

The cost of the burdizzo's? I found places I could get them in Australia - for $300plus dollars. But in the US - $30 - you can guess where I got them from.