Duke and Meyla

Duke and Meyla

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Bandaged Heads

Recently, we've had two goats going around with bandaged heads-for much the same reason. Both were bleeding from horn related injuries. Just an interesting note: Both goats are bucks, and both injuries were on the right side. 
The first one happened to Andy, about a month ago. He has ugly scurs that like to curl around and gouge into his head. I've trimmed them once before, and then he kept them knocked off by fighting with Sultan from time to time. However, we sold Sultan last summer, and since then the scurs had gradually been getting bigger and bigger. Finally, I decided it was time to trim again, as the tips of both were touching his head, and continuing to grow. 
So, I tied him up to the fence, got a helper to hold his head, and started hacking away with a pair of large pruning shears. The left one chopped off nicely, and only bled a teensy as I had trimmed it too short. 
When I got to the right side, I couldn't seem to be able to fit the blade of the pruning shears between his head and the horn. After a lot of maneuvering, and a change of helpers, I did get the blade under the horn. I chopped it off.
Rather, I tried to chop it off. The horn was slanted so that when I tried cutting it, it twisted, and the whole thing popped off. It was bleeding pretty bad, though not as bad as I would have expected. After a decent rodeo, some skinned knuckles, a copious amount of blood stop, lots of gauze, and a roll of vet wrap, he was good to go. He was trembling really bad so I gave him some cayenne pepper too, in case of shock. 
I took the bandage off in a couple of days and he is fine. I think a better idea for next time is a wire saw instead of pruning shears.


The other one, was Gideon and it happened yesterday. 
I had tried disbudding him on Monday, but the torch didn't appear to get the iron hot enough so I figured I'd better redo him the next day, using the sauna stove instead if torch for heating the iron. 
So, I did Joshua first, and then applied the iron to Gideon's right horn bud. Instantly, he started bleeding. It wasn't spurting like an artery, but oozing like a vein, and for such a little guy, it looked like a lot of blood. I applied the iron again in an attempt to cauterize the vein with no luck. So, I quickly did the left horn(stupid, what if that one started too?), and told Brittany to run get the blood stop powder. It didn't stop it. Brittany ran back for bandages, while I yelled for Mom in a panicked voice. (Looking back, what would she have done, I don't know. But that's what Mom's are for, right?) Anyway, Mom didn't hear me. 
I dumped piles of powder on his head, and began bandaging it with bright, pink vet wrap. I got it all wrapped up, but quickly the blood seeped through. Brittany went and got the cayenne tincture, and I gave him a dose, as supposedly it helps stop bleeding and in case he was shocked. 
Mom did come out about then, and we quickly decided I'd better take him to the vet in case it didn't stop and he needed a transfusion or something. 
So, Brittany and I loaded into the pickup and headed for the vet. The whole way there, Brittany kept good pressure on his head and it paid off. When we got there and the bandage was taken off, it had very nearly stopped bleeding. 
As the vet tech cleaned it up to get a better look, it began again, but she quickly got it stopped. It kept starting and stopping but nothing as bad as it had originally been. Finally, it was slowed to a teeny trickle and they put some absorbent sponge on it and wrapped it up again. 
Gideon is doing very well considering what he's been through-he just seems a little more sluggish than most kids are, but not bad. I cut the bandage off this morning, and just left a little square of cotton that was stuck onto the wound. Hopefully, it'll fall off on it's own so that I don't have to tear it off and possibly make it bleed again. 


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