Castration

Castration is the "removal of the testicles" in young male cattle or severing of the spermatic cord and should ideally be carried out on very young bull calves before six months of age. 

Why castrate?

  • Prevent undesirable bull calves from breeding.

  • Control behaviour: castrated male cattle are generally less aggressive, easier to handle and less likely to fight and causing injury to other animals and damaging fences.

  • Secondary sex characteristics of bulls tend to make bull meat tougher and less attractive to consumers, especially for higher priced cuts.

  • Disadvantages of castration are minor compared to the advantages.

  • Removal of testicles before puberty reduces the calf growth rate.

How?

  1. Surgical (any age - performed by a vet)

  2. Small castrating rings (young age only)

  3. Castrator (older animals - performed by a vet or experienced animal handler)

  4. Large castrating bands (older animals - more humane and successful than the above)

Efficient restraint is required for safety of the animal and handler. Disinfect all equipment used between animals, whether performing surgical or non-surgical castration, and have a separate bucket of antiseptic for washing hands.

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