Dehorning of calves: Gently dehorn cattle and calves with a dehorner

The dehorning of calves is of great importance in today's cattle farming, because cattle accidents are at the top of the farm accident statistics. Dehorning provides farmers with safety at work and minimizes the risk of injury to both humans and cattle. The dehorning of cattle also offers many advantages from a business point of view: cattle without horns can be better integrated into the herd, require less space in the feed fence and have a higher sales value.

With us you can buy a high quality range of professional dehorners for dehorning calves and cattle. All of our devices for dehorning calves meet the requirements of the Animal Welfare Act and have proven themselves in use by farmers and farmers for decades. In order to be able to carry out dehorning properly and stress-free, we give you on this page, summarized in the essential points, useful information with which you can buy the optimal dehorning device as well as valuable tips on correct dehorning:

  1. Benefits of dehorning calves and cattle
  2. These dehorning devices exist
  3. These two methods are used in dehorning
  4. At what age can calves be dehorned?
  5. Instructions for dehorning: Dehorning calves stress-free

1. Benefits of dehorning calves and cattle:

Lower risk of injury: Dehorning the calf immediately after birth makes an important contribution to accident prevention, because the horns of cattle are very pointed and can seriously injure the farmer, his employees and other cattle. If calves and cattle are dehorned, the risk of injury to both humans and other animals is reduced.

Less rank fights: Cattle with horns often have an aggressive and restless character. This leads to an increase in the number of fights for coveted positions. If the horns are properly removed with a dehorner, the animals are calmer and no longer tend to defend their territory as quickly.

Gaining space in the cattle barn: Cattle without horns need less minimum distance to other cattle. Thanks to the space gained, the maintenance costs can be effectively reduced.

Promotion of health: Injuries to the horns are particularly common in cattle due to the high number of rank fights. The horns break, the horn tips can grow into older cattle. Ideally, the horn system is removed in the first few weeks of life, as this prevents complications on the horns in adulthood.

2. These dehorners for dehorning calves are available:

Nowadays the farmer or farmer can choose between different dehorning devices, which offer different advantages and disadvantages depending on the mode of operation. Corded dehorners, battery dehorners, gas dehorners and dehorning saws are suitable for professional destruction of the horn system.

Corded dehorner: A corded dehorning device is basically just a modified soldering iron. More time must be planned for dehorning the animals, as the heating process takes about 12 minutes. As soon as the dehorner has reached operating temperature, any number of cattle can be dehorned, regardless of whether the horn system is only isolated or completely destroyed.

Battery dehorner: A cordless dehorner for dehorning calves has the decisive advantage that there is no annoying cable around you, which can interfere with dehorning. The cordless dehorning device heats up to 700 ° C within 4 seconds. With a battery-operated device, however, in contrast to the wired version, you cannot remove the entire horn system. But that does not have to be a disadvantage: dehorned animals, in which only one ring is destroyed, are exposed to less stress and pain and regenerate faster.

Gas dehorner: Gas-powered devices for dehorning calves heat up faster than wired devices, but are slower than battery dehorning. The advantage of gas dehorning devices is that maintenance is comparatively cheap and easier than with cordless dehorners.

Dehorning saw: A corded dehorner saw is suitable for dehorning adult cattle and consists of an angle grinder, a saw blade attachment and a saw blade. The teeth of the saw blade are twisted and therefore ideally suited for other work such as cutting Wood.

3. These two methods are used in dehorning

Two different methods can be used for dehorning calves and cattle. On the one hand, a dehorner with a fuel rod is used for thermal dehorning, whereas in older cattle the horn system is destroyed with a dehorning saw.

Thermal dehorning:

The thermal removal or destruction of the horn system is considered a routine intervention in calves, which is normally carried out by the animal owner on calves under 6 weeks old. A dehorning device with a fuel rod is placed directly on the horn system and rotated from left to right and vice versa for several seconds. In common practice, painkillers and sedatives are used to make the procedure as gentle as possible for the calf.

Saw dehorning:

The removal of the horn system from fully grown cattle is done in practice with a dehorning saw with saw wire. While the destruction of the horn system of calves is largely carried out by farmers themselves, dehorning and the legally regulated pain elimination in adult animals may only be carried out by a qualified veterinarian.

4. At what age can calves be dehorned?

The horn bud of the young calf is visible and palpable from the 2nd week of life. If the dehorning is carried out by the farmer, the calves must be dehorned between the 2nd and 6th week of life in accordance with the Animal Welfare Act. If the calves are older than 6 weeks, the procedure may only be carried out by a qualified veterinarian.

Animal Welfare Act in Germany and Austria:

Legal regulation in Germany: In Germany, calves can only be dehorned up to 6 weeks of age. Organic farms are allowed to dehorn their cattle if they have a special permit. The veterinarian has to anesthetize the calves and the destruction of the horn system may only be carried out by a properly authorized person. Farmers and farmers with relevant agricultural training (apprenticeship, skilled worker or master) are considered competent and are allowed to perform dehorning.

Legal regulation in Austria: In Austria, the dehorning of cattle is permitted under the Animal Welfare Act, subject to certain legal framework conditions. Farmers must consider all possible means to minimize pain for the calf. Only veterinarians or experts are allowed to dehorn cattle. According to the animal husbandry ordinance, the horns of calves up to 2 weeks old can be removed with a fuel rod with precise control and shut-off mechanism without anesthesia. Burning out with other common fuel rods is only possible after effective anesthesia and pain elimination by the veterinarian. Organic farms always have to stun their animals for dehorning.

5. Instructions for dehorning: Dehorning calves stress-free

Our instructions for dehorning calves will help you keep an eye on all the important work steps. In this way you ensure uncomplicated and stress-free dehorning of your calves and rapid regeneration of the animals.


  • Make a list of healthy calves that are between 2 and 6 weeks old.
  • Make an appointment to anesthetize the calves with the veterinary practice.
  • Determine a quiet place for dehorning (the calf must be able to be tethered).

You need this material for dehorning:

This is how dehorning works:

  1. The anesthetic is administered by the vet using a syringes.
  2. Simultaneous administration of the pain reliever NSAID.
  3. Wait until it takes effect (approx. 10-15 minutes).
  4. Use a cattle llipper to shave around the horn bud area.
  5. Choosing the appropriate size of the burner head according to the size of the horn bud.
  6. Secure tying of the calf with a calf halter.
  7. Wait until the dehorner has reached operating temperature.
  8. Place the burner head around the horn bud for 5–10 seconds until a continuous, 4–5 mm deep furrow is formed around the base of the horn.
    (Warning: after more than 12 seconds there is a risk of brain damage!)
  9. Spray blue spray on the affected area.
  10. Place freshly dehorned calves on their breasts.
  11. Hold on straw in a separate group in a calf hut until all the calves are awake.

Your advantages in the Agrarzone shop:

Free returns: This applies to all parcel deliveries that are returned within 30 days. You can also return freight forwarded goods within 30 days. However, the costs for the return with forwarding delivery are to be borne by the customer.

No risk thanks to the 30-day money-back guarantee: If the product you have purchased is not the right one for you, you can return the item to us within 30 days of delivery without giving a reason. We will then refund you the full purchase price.

Fast delivery: For deliveries to Austria and Germany, you will receive your order within 1-3 working days.