Saturday, August 24, 2013

Trimming Goat Hooves

Goats can be persnickety creatures.  They are smart and they are stubborn.  And mine HATE getting manicures!

I have been asked how to trim goat hooves.  Well here is how I do it. Goats have a outer hoof like a fingernail and they have a soft inner hoof for gripping.  If they were living with rocks the rocks would keep the outer hooves rubbed down.  But my pasture has no rocks so I have to trim them.  They also have a heel part that can grow up. 

First put them on a stand with some grain to keep them busy,
Then you will need a pair of trimmers.  They need to be sharp and pointy.  You can either go out and buy a pair of hoof rot trimmers which was kind of pricey or a nice pair of rose bush trimmers will work also.
In the next picture you will see the hoof which the outer covering has grown up and curved over.  That is what needs to be trimmed.  Also the heel gets a little long so I will trim that down also.

The next picture shows the hoof after the trim
You can see the light colored parts where I trimmed off the excess.

If you cut too deep you can hurt them and also cause bleeding the same as cutting your own nails too short.  So go easy and just take off a little at a time.  If you start to see any pink then stop.  Mine like to fight and argue.  Usually grain or soft words help.  I also will sit next to them and lean my back up against them while I do it.  This seems to have a calming effect on my girls.

I usually trim their hooves about every 3 months.

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