Disbudding Calves


Type: Webpage
Knowledge level: Introductory

Farm Table says:

With increasing concern of animal welfare, it's important to use best practice techniques and pain relief when completing tasks like disbudding.  It might be worth considering using a portion of polled bulls in your breeding program too.

This webpage, produced by DairyNZ, discusses remove horn buds in dairy calves.  It goes through the physiology of the horn buds and focuses on the need for pain relief during the process.

The key sections include:

  • When to disbud the calf;
  • Pain relief options;
  • Methods of horn bud removal; and
  • Dehorning older animals.

It also includes a table that can be used to assess the options available for pain relief when the process is completed by different providers (the farmer, a husbandry service provider or vet) with indicators of time, cost and comfort of the calf.

In conclusion, this webpage is an easily understood summary explaining the benefit of disbudding and the best practice techniques that can be utilised in order to prevent horn growth in dairy calves.

2018 - New Zealand - DairyNZ
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