Slaughtering a goat


November 25, 2011, 12:54 AM
Hey guys, I was just curious because a family friend asked me if my Phoenix arms .22 would kill a goat effevtively? I know it's a neat little gun but would a shot to the back of a goats head drop the goat with the velocity coming out of such a small barrell? And if so exactly where would the "sweet spot" be? I've read blogs saying from ear to opposite eye on top of the head on both sides and where they cross is the sweet spot. Thanks for any help in advance

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November 25, 2011, 01:15 AM
It can be done but if you don't know what you are doing or mess it up you will make the animal suffer. I would pass if I were you, and if they plan on doing this they should learn how to do it right and do it themselves.

November 25, 2011, 04:48 AM

The link above should have what you are looking for. These are ethical ways of putting down animals. I know there is a section specifically on a gunshot to the head. This may or may or may not discuss shot placement. Read it, it may give you an idea of other methods that are more effective.

November 25, 2011, 04:01 PM
I shot a buck several times in the head with a .380 not my weapon of choice but it was handed to me by the woman that hit him. That poor buck was knocked over each time and got back up. I shot it on the neck and it dropped dead. I think the right .22 round would penetrate better but if your going to do it be prepared to to deal with it if the first round doesn't do it.

November 25, 2011, 04:36 PM
Hit it between the eyes with a big hammer, cut it's throat, and hang it up to bleed out.

Thats what a slaughter house or butcher would have done for several century's.


November 25, 2011, 04:53 PM
I have slaughtered hundreds of goats and some sheep. Goats can be killed with a .22LR behind the ear and angled into the brain, but a goats head is designed for abuse and it is very marginal. A .22 mag with 40 or 50 grain boolits does the deed well however and is the preferred load among professionals who shoot them around here. For me a .32acp or .38 special is optimal destroying little meat (some people like the brains) but doing the deed well even if delivered between the eyes or into an eye from a few yards. The .22 Hornet and the .30 carbine work well for those wild ones you have to shoot at 50 feet or more in a pasture but scramble the brains pretty well.
If you can get one where you can swing a 28 .oz hammer real hard between the eyes that works like has been said, to stun them before the blade work. Regarding the blade work I prefer a straight spined stout but razor sharp blade from 6-9 inches long with a non slip handle that will work in blood. The humane way to kill a quadraped IMHO, is to thrust the blade thru the neck , which requires a stout , relatively thin and narrow blade that is very sharp with the top of the straight spine of the knife riding against the spine of the animal. Done quickly and accurately they barely flinch. As soon as you have complete penetration of the neck push the handle of the knife down and away from you using the spine of the animal as a fulcrum for the blade and you will sever every thing below the spine making an instant pez dispenser and the animal will lose consciousness instantly and only have nerve reaction. This is hard to do on hogs BTW and sticking the heart is a better option in my experience, but I have done it successfully on stunned hogs too.

November 26, 2011, 10:06 PM
Well, for any livestock, at least in my opinion, the question is how close can you get. If you can walk right up to the goat, pig, cow then in my opinion the best place to hit them is in the brain stem. That being said, not many will let you that close. The traditional is to shoot right between the eyes, slightly elevated. The behind the ear at angle is also a great suggestion, that works well, but again if you can't get close to them it isn't workable, so the between the eyes shot is the necessary one.

A .22 is the work horse of any ranch, often being used to put down livestock.


A pheonix arms .22, while an admirable little weapon, has no place for this kind of work. Go to the store and buy a beater .22 rifle new or used and it will do fine. I recently picked up an old Glenfield (marlin) model 60 for $45.00. After cleaning it, which apparently had never been done since the gun was bought, it shoots like new.

Another edit...

My grandfather was very fond of .38 specials for this kind of work as well. Another underrated "working" gun on a farm.

Ohio Gun Guy
November 26, 2011, 10:24 PM
watch out for ricochets. I've heard about farmers getting one in the leg from a hard headed animal....

Been there, done that.....NOT fun. But a good life lesson.

November 26, 2011, 11:19 PM
I have never heard that, and no offense, doubt that it is true.

November 27, 2011, 08:22 AM
just my 2 cents: if you can catch the goat you dont really need a firearm of anykind. i have worked with an old school butcher ( hes 86 know and just retired) he uses the ground stun method where you grab them by the legs and flip as fast as you can and ground stun them. it shocks there spine and disorients them. then you just slit there throat. i have done hundreds like this and never had a problem. i have seen guys shoot there leg trying to hold a goat between there legs and shoot it. ideally you shoot them between the horn cap or if the dont have horns where the horns would be. its called the " pole".

wj kerr
November 29, 2011, 01:50 PM
Seen a .22 lr round out of a semi auto ricochet off the forehead off a old sow one time many years ago . Luck had it no one was hurt. So it can happen.

November 29, 2011, 02:01 PM
Friend of mine had a couple of .22 rounds bounce off the boss of an old cow he was putting down.

.308 didn't bounce, but was a bit much for the job.

November 30, 2011, 09:16 PM
Hey guys, I was just curious because a family friend asked me if my Phoenix arms .22 would kill a goat effevtively?

Why not? I've put down 100+ lb trapped wild boar with my NAA .22 mini revolver. I have a HP22, but never carry it, always have my NAA on me as a back up to a larger handgun, but it's also my "put down" gun of choice.

Slaughter houses used to use, not sure they still do, .22 short "stun guns" on long sticks to put down barnyard pigs. One shot to the brain, all it took.

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