As you can see from this picture of Wilfred, our main billy goat, the boys can grow pretty impressive sets of horns.

goat horns

I was quite surprised to watch them and learn that they don’t appear to use their horn tips aggressively.  They use them for the important things in life – like scratching their back – and use their battering ram foreheads and the base of their horns for arguing with.

 

goat horns

The apprentice’s wether, Toffee, has strange horns.  You can see in this picture of him that, instead of curving outwards, his horns are growing straight backwards and curving downwards.  We have been watching and waiting for them to start curving outwards, but it has become increasingly apparent that, left to themselves, his horns are going to grow either into his neck, or “just” either side of his neck preventing him from moving his head properly.

If you compare him with the photo below of his mum Coco, you can see the difference in the shape and direction of growth of the horns.

goat horns

So, when the vet was here to do the routine vaccination/teeth/check-ups, I asked him to have a look at Toffee.

The end result is that I am going to have to remove the tips of his horns – I suppose on a regular basis once I start.  The vet has kindly furnished me with a full set of instructions on how to do it so all I have to do is get the apprentice to keep him standing still while I lop off bits of horn.

Watch out for the update where I announce the winners of this particular fight 🙂

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