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Old Jul 25th 2010, 08:22 AM   #1
 IndependenceRanch's Avatar
  Apr 2009
  Edgar, WI

Cervid: deer
I thought I would start a thread for this topic so there is a place for people to search for help when they need it. This is something no one cares about or thinks about until the time they have an issue.

I have only had the need to intervene twice so far for antler damage.

One time I used the pine tar trick and one time I went with the cotton idea.

I don't know how many others have tried this or what luck they may have had if they did try it. But I had a local dairy farmer tell me that an ole' timer told him that when they would cut horns on the cattle they would use cotton balls pulled apart to fill in the hole where the blood was down inside. Then spray over the top of it with some sort of spray to help keep out flies and keep the cotton in place.

Apparently the cotton stops flies from laying eggs or it stops maggots or something like that. That maggots don't like the cotton he said. I was told this back earlier this year when one of my 2 year olds tore his antlers completely off his head. We darted him and instead of using the pine tar trick we tried the cotton idea. I pulled some cotton balls apart and patted thin layers of cotton down into the bloody areas. Then I sprayed the whole area and the neck and ears with Bluecoat. NOTE: Cover the eyes! I sprayed the whole area like that because of the amount of blood he had all over him. Of course I washed off as much blood as possible and dried him off prior to spraying him down.

To our knowledge he did not get any infection or have issues with maggots, and all though it took a long time to start growing again he is growing some now. (He is out about 3 inches right now)

Darn shame because he was off to an incredible start. I think he would have been the real deal based on how he had started and how he finished the year out last year as a yearling. That and what his pedigree is. PJ on a Flees' Butkus/Magnum/Louie which just happens to be the mother to Max Thrust.

I just thought I would throw that cotton idea out there in case anyone has done it, heard of this, or feels the need to try it.

The pine tar idea is coating the area with pine tar to keep the flies and maggots out of the area. The maggots will otherwise get under the velvet and go towards the head and result in a dead buck. The one time I used this method I later had to knock the buck down again to remove the pine tar and the infection that had started under the pine tar and was oozing out from under it. This second doctoring session was about 3 weeks later.

Pine tar can be purchased at a place like Fleet Farm or some type of Hardware supply store.

Each case will be different as to what is the best solution. Sometimes doing nothing is the best solution.

Keep in mind the summer heat when doing this. It is best to do it late in the evening or first light in the morning. Use ice packs between the rear legs to help keep the body temp in check if needed.

We like to use both a good antibiotic like Draxxin or Tetradure and we also use Banamine to help with pain and swelling. I like to give some of the antibiotic subQ and the rest IM.

I know many people have to doctor on their bucks each year. I hope others will share what they do for their bucks when they have these issues.
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Old Jul 25th 2010, 11:21 AM   #2
  Apr 2009
  Waverly, IA
I only intervene if I see lots of flies, fly eggs, or first sign of maggots. I also wait until first light or late in the evening. However I use a little different regimen.

First, trim away any loose velvet making sure remaining velvet is tight against the antler. Spray Catron IV on the wound and the surrounding area. If there are eggs on the wound I try to get as many off as I can. You don'y have to get everyone as the Catron with kill both the eggs and maggots. I usually spray the wound a couple of times with the Catron and I also pour them with Cylence between the shoulders. The Catron and Cylence repels flies long enough for the damaged antler to heal on its own so flies aren't a problem later. Give them antibiotics and reverse them.
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Old Jul 26th 2010, 01:05 AM   #3
  Apr 2009
  Zanesville, Ohio
I had my first experience with antler damage this year. A 2 year old broke about four inches off his main beam. If you imagine a banana being split by hand while still in the peel, that is how it appeared only bloody. A couple of days and the dangling bone fell off. There was no intervention but that didn't mean I wasn't sweatin' it! First time for this so maybe no overreacting next time I see it. Rollercoaster!
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Old Jul 26th 2010, 05:07 AM   #4
  Apr 2009
  Waverly, IA
Rusty, glad to hear everything turned out ok. Most of the time that is the case. They dry up and fall off no problem. But still be cautious, maggots are terrible to deal with.

I don't know how many others have tried this or what luck they may have had if they did try it. But I had a local dairy farmer tell me that an ole' timer told him that when they would cut horns on the cattle they would use cotton balls pulled apart to fill in the hole where the blood was down inside. Then spray over the top of it with some sort of spray to help keep out flies and keep the cotton in place.

Roger, as a kid when we dehorned cattle we used to use the round milk strainer pads and cut circles out of them to place over top where the horn used to be. A little blood stop powder on top of that and they were good to go. Nowdays after they are dehorned the vet just puts blood stop powder on them and that is it.
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Old Jul 26th 2010, 05:58 AM   #5
 IndependenceRanch's Avatar
  Apr 2009
  Edgar, WI

Cervid: deer
When we dehorned calfs we used to just burn the blood vessels and call it good. That said all I am saying with my post is that since us deer farmers biggest concerns are infection and maggots I thought I would share the cotton story with everyone.
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Old Jul 26th 2010, 07:19 AM   #6
  Apr 2009
  Magnolia, Ohio
Last Thursday night when it was still 80+, we darted a 2 year old that had broken about 10" of his right main beam. Normally I would wait and see how bad the flies get but this one was hanging from about 6" of velvet and at times would flip over his rack and lay across his nose. He was constantly fussing with it and stressing so I decided to see if I could get him darted without him starting to run. Once in a while a plan works and this was one of those times. I actually found him laying near the fence and hit him while he was still laying. He ran about 50 yards and stopped then laid down within 10 min. We did the "surgery" on him and cleaned him up with peroxide, 10 cc's of Nuflor and covered him with Catron, Swat and Cylence and scored him (198" and still round tines). It is usually the nicest ones that give you fits. Now, he looks great with no flies around him... but...

Last year, same time of year, a 4 year old breaks off about an 8" drop tine. For 2 days he is just fine, few flies. Then go out the next day and see his ears down and loaded with flies and maggots. Dart him in the heat, clean him up, score him (270+, see it's always the nicest ones), cover him with Cylence abd Catron and let him go. For an entire week he sits serene in the pen, no flies no problems. Then, the 8th. day after, ears down and sick. 3 cc's of Draxxin, next day he looks worse, and it's obvious that he isn't going to make it. I talk to another deer farmer, he says "quit using that &^*%$ Draxxin and hit him with Micotil. I call the Vet, go 40 miles and get Micotil, come home and go right up to the buck who is too sick to run, hit him with 2 cc's and leave the pen. Next morning, I go out to look for him, he sees me coming a hundred or more yards away and takes off running! A complete turn-around. I hit him with 2 more cc's later and he completely recovered and even grew into the 280's.

My points are that you have to keep close watch on deer with busted antlers for a long time and react to what you see. Then if you tranq. them, you have to watch them close again for at least the next 10 days. For some reason, it seems that pneumonia can set in several days after tranq'ing. Be very careful using Micotil. It can kill you if you slip up and stick yourself and it can kill the animal you are trying to save. As a general rule, I only use it if I see it as the last chance of saving a deer. Hop e this advice helps.
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Old Jul 26th 2010, 09:45 AM   #7
  Jun 2009
  Mora, MN
Good thread you started here Roger and everybody’s information with what worked for them maybe helpful to others and our self. I have used Bluecoat with Catron IV with 5cc of Draxxin last year with good results. Each case of antler damage maybe different form the next one and what works on one deer may not work on the next one. One buck will live thru a small amount of antler infection while another one will die from it. This is why everybody’s’ information could be very helpful to someone.

What works good to stop the bleeding after cutting a damage antler in velvet?

Micotil is one of those drugs that can be deadly if given with other medication , LA 200 is one of them and there are most likely others. Ask your Vet about this before using it.

Good Whitetails

Marc Good
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Old Aug 16th 2010, 07:38 AM   #8
  Apr 2009
  Ewing, Illinois
Last year there was a video posted on here of a buck with damaged antlers and it showed them cuting the antlers off. Does anyone still have that link? I've search and cant find it. They even used toothpicks to plug the veins when they would squirt blood. If you know what I'm talking about please let me know.

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Old Aug 16th 2010, 09:21 AM   #9
  Jun 2009
  Denver PA USA
Matt, here is the link for that video.

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Old Aug 16th 2010, 12:30 PM   #10
  Apr 2009
  Ewing, Illinois
Thanks Delfred!!
gcw matt is offline  
Old Aug 17th 2010, 05:45 AM   #11
  Apr 2009
Be careful with the Micotil as that will cause you or the deer to go into cardiac arrest if it gets in the bloodstream. Only use it Sub-Q. Had an incedent with a deer that I shot through a dart. Dead buck in about 15 seconds. Happened about 10 years ago, but stupid is as stupid does....
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