Trimming a rooster's spurs

by Liz Beavis
Poor Wilbur doesn't particularly appreciate being picked up, but we noticed that he had injured a couple of the hens with his spurs, so we decided it was time for a pedicure.  This is required every year or so, depending on how fast the rooster's spurs grow, this was the first time we had done Wilbur, but we've done plenty of other roosters.

Wilbur looking unhappy - you can see it too, can't you?
There are various methods involving pliers and even a hot potato, but our preferred method is to use the angle grinder.  Although the noise is a bit scary, the process is very quick and the heat seals the spur so there is very little blood loss.  Its easier with two people, one to hold the rooster (me) and the other to operate the power tool (Peter).  I usually hold the rooster so that his head is under my arm, and his wings are secure, then Peter grabs the rooster's leg and holds that tight before quickly taking off the sharp point of the spur.

spur before

after angle grinding
 Peter then quickly files the spur so there are no sharp edges and after a quick cuddle (completely unappreciated by the rooster), he is released back to his hens.

after filing

me and Wilbur

Do you trim your rooster's spurs?  What method do you use?


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