castrating pigs

Wednesday, October 30:

   We had seen young male pigs castrated before – once – forty years ago – and there is nothing to it, at least, not for the party of the first part.  We had, however, a little trepidation about doing it for ourselves.  Our beloved vet, while admitting that she herself would do it with the help of anesthetic and stitches, reluctantly advised us to watch a farmer do it as a field operation.  We watched a video.  Nothing to it:  cut, pinch, yank.  Twice.  The first little guy was so outraged at the time, and looked so discouraged post facto, that we left him to the sympathy of his family and let the others wait, until we could see for ourselves how he recovered.  Lo and behold, two days later he could not be distinguished from his fellows, not at a casual glance.  So, today the men finished the job.  Three more little pigs joined the ranks of those “not needed for breeding purposes”.  We learn a lot of new tricks on this job.

   Now I’m going to go bait the mousetraps in the kitchen; something has been gnawing the baseboards.

2 thoughts on “castrating pigs

  1. It’s quite a process the first time you do it yourself, hey? We raise Large Blacks and with a recent litter that was all males, we castrated half and left half. We’ll compare growth rate, aggression, and taste and then decide whether we will routinely castrate future litters. Our current boar has the sweetest nature – so as long as we don’t have a boar taint issue (spicy sausages will take care of that if we do…), we are inclined to keep it simple and not castrate in the future.

  2. Hi, Dark Creek —
    We hear that spicy dried (not cooked) sausage was the traditional use for old boars, so we will make casings when we butcher and take a stab at making pepperoni and salami. Beast has another three weeks with the sow; if Thanksgiving weekend is below forty-five we’ll get him in the freezer and buy another Spotted boar piglet for next year’s breeding. What do you think of your Large Blacks?

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