Freeze branding

Who can tell me what is the procedure if you want to make up your own brand to do your own horses. I dont mean like a big ugly brand on both shoulders, but a small brand like on the standys. A friend was talking about making a brand with her company initials with yr of birth for each horse/pony. Can it be done or will a vet do it

rodeoclown, May 31, 6:54 am

Ask a vet! Dont know who else would know

dunfold, May 31, 7:38 am

I imagine you would need a vet to do the procedure -- not many people have access to liquid nitrogen to do it themselves.
You can make your own brands --I kmow people who have done it, but cant help you with contruction advise howver.

Remember also that the size of a brand is largely dependant on when it is put on the horse.
As far as ugly big shoulder brands remember that the same size iron used on a foal and a 2yo will result in VERY different sized brands -- the foal brand grows with the foal, the older horse brand will not.

joa, May 31, 8:08 am

Mike, why don't you email HRNZ to see how they do it! I know with the Shetlands and fire-branding the vet does it but the brands can be made by an engineering company. The vet also tends to have their own set of brands.

My work did our numbers (just as a one off though) and my brand, but when the apprentice brought it to me he had to re-do it as it needed to be mirror image and he had done it as it would appear on the horse/pony . LOL.

dandrich, May 31, 8:09 am

Hahaha D, I can imagine that mistake being done. Its something I had already discovered myself. Ive seen a few home made brands but none of them have ever been used that I know of & they dont know if they can do the job or not. To me, it sounds like gelding. Many many many yrs ago a horse owner or farmer was allowed to do the gelding of his horses but not anymore. Im wondering if its the same as branding. Some have said you need a license for the liquid nitrogen & others have said youneed a licensed vet to administer the brand. Ive heard so many different stories its getting confusing.
I think if I was gonna get any of mine done(if I had any) I would wait until they are yearlings anyway. At least by then you wouldnt need such a small iron. I would be able to make theiron myself anyway. Why pay someone to do the job when I have the experiense myself.
Would the brand need to be registered was my other question

rodeoclown, May 31, 8:26 am

i enquired about this when i had my stallion. i was told to contact thoroughbred racing nz and they will give you the specifications of the size of the brand etc you then get the branding iron made up yourself, you can reg it with them, but needs to be done by a vet as the horse also needs to be sedated to be branded humanely

sunnybrookefarm, May 31, 9:02 am this guy freezebrands cattle all over the place, I think its $6.50 from memory.maybe after you make your own brand you could contact him for the actual branding bit, usually they clip the area first, and that bit seems to upset them more than the actual branding (well with cows it does)

dezzie, May 31, 9:07 am

hey mike, brands are reg with i think TB assotiation. there is a size they have to be. but i cant for the life of me find the link i had to info. Aurther may know

fewspot, May 31, 9:12 am

fewspot, May 31, 9:25 am

I brand my own and brand a few for other people. It doesn't have to be done via vets. There's a few different methods, I use dry ice, I don't think it hurts them as much as Nitrogen (They move less). There are a few different places that sell custom brands as well.

ryderc, May 31, 9:45 am

I'm looking at getting some more brands. I called this place and they are quite reasonably priced. The custom make brands as well.!p=59
I'm a big advocate for dry ice over nitrogen. The contact time is longer than nitrogen but I have found 0-7seconds they don'y react, 8-15seconds they move a wee bit then after that the areas is frozen and numb.

ryderc, May 31, 10:12 am

I had both fire and freeze brands made for my stud, I went to a local sheetmetal place and they made them for me. The fire brand must be iron and the freeze brand must be Bronze. I drew a picture of what I wanted to scale (I borrowed one of my vets brands to get the right size) and the made it (was $180 for 2 brands). The TB people were going to charge us $210 per brand. You can brand the foal/horse yourself just ask your vet where to get the liquid Nitrogen.

You will also have to check to see if your brand is registered already because if it is you can't use it. My brand is registered with my breed soc (AQHA-NZ).

ka-dih1, May 31, 10:47 am

No it doesn't need to be sedated to be done humanely, they are to stop them moving and blotching the brand. A lot of horses are branded without sedation.

NZTBA acts as a brand register holder.

A horse brand does not need to be any bigger than 4" or whatever the metric equivalent is. (Metrics are a fad and won't last. Bring back imperial!LOL)

RC, if you care to email me with your proposed brand I may be able to tell you if it is already in use as I have a large database here (not all but most).


twinoaks1, May 31, 6:22 pm

The trouble with freeze branding is everything has to be weighed etc and a vet is the most safest option for sedation etc and if anything goes wrong they are there on hand :)

slipway_summer, May 31, 6:28 pm

Thanks for that info everyone. I didnt know about having to use brass for freeze branding though.
Thanks Arthur, I spose I better do a sketch of it & get it scannned eh. Mine is still in storage.
Ka-dih1, that $180 for the 2 brands, was that just the cost of getting the irons made! If so they must use the bestest of steel eh.
4" is 100mm & that is a damn big mark. Im sure you could make em smaller for a pony! I was thinking more on the size of the SB brands

rodeoclown, May 31, 6:42 pm

Ours are brass, they are quite small and very neat, just a couple of handles as the heads have a thread and the handles can be used on all the individual heads, it is not difficult to get the liquid nitrogen but you need a proper tank to store it in, the stuff doesnt last long once it is out of the tank, pour it into a chilly bin and immerse the heads you are going to use but be aware they get immensly cold so they need the handle not to conduct the cold, you need metholated spirits to wet the hair before applying the brand and of course the area needs to be closely shaved, the animal need to be held correctly if a foal and an older horse would need to be tranquilized, so really you do need the vet.
Your brand would need to be registered with what ever breed society you are going to use, for tbs the NZTB assn keep the records it never cost us anything to register our brand.

annies3, May 31, 6:45 pm

The size of brands reads thus:
The brands to be used must have a marking face not to exceed 6.3mm in width, the cipher shall not be less than 25.4mm or more than 38.1mm in depth and the numerical brands shall not be less than 25.4mm nor more than 38.1mm in depth,
Cast tech Andrew Potter 07 8493814

annies3, May 31, 6:50 pm

Thank you annies3, those are the answers I was after re the brand size. If there is another way around it, the TBNZ wont be holding my records. Not when they want money for everything. Spose I could try HRNZ ;-)
I always thought that a vet held the records. All the brands I have searched, they have, so long as you know the area it origionated from

rodeoclown, May 31, 7:13 pm

TBNZ is different to NZ Thoroughbred Breeders Assn.
Vets hold records for their own brandings but not everybody elses.
Different breeds societies members can use the same cypher, i.e. A TB breeder, a NZQHA breeder, a Welsh breeder, etc could all use the same cypher as the animals differentuate the user.
Many small breeders do not have their own cypher and use their local vets cypher.


twinoaks1, Jun 1, 9:51 am

The $180 was to have the 2 brands made, the place mentioned above charges $210 per brand so would have cost me $420 for the 2 brands (they make all the brands for Thoroughbred racing). My brands are around 2 inches by 2 inches and my foals are usually branded at 5 months old. Here is one of my horses who has been branded here, she is a yearling, you can see her brand on the shoulder, it won't get much bigger than that either. another yearling showing the size of the brand
this filly was branded about 2 weeks before this photo was taken, you can see the actual size of the letters on her.

ka-dih1, Jun 1, 10:20 am

Any good engineering shop will be able to do it as long as they remember to make a mirror image of the finished product and take into account the extreme temps that liquid N is subject to

ponyboy, Jun 1, 8:05 pm

Wont need to. Im capable of making them myself once I find access to a forge. I dont have 1 these days. As for the brass, thats 1 thing I might have to go out & buy :-(

rodeoclown, Jun 1, 8:15 pm

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