It is currently Fri Aug 22, 2014 6:34 pm

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 6 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Picking Up Feet for Farrier Work
PostPosted: Sun Mar 28, 2010 9:43 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2007 3:57 pm
Posts: 195
Location: Iowa
I went out this afternoon to trim my gelding Milo's hooves. I grew up watching my dad trim the ranch horses, and do it myself in order to save money. My horses all have good feet, have been barefoot their entire lives, and it makes sense to do it myself. But I ran into trouble today with Milo.

His front feet went fine, he was a perfect gentleman. Then I asked for a hind foot and the whole thing went downhill from there. He let me pick it out, but didn't want me to trim it. He would jerk his hoof away and not stand still for me to lift it again. He also threatened to kick a few times, so I waited until my husband could help me.

We tried a few different things, and it ended up taking us quite awhile to get the job done, but I was determined to finish because his hind feet were the longest, and they really needed trimmed. We tied him next to a wall so he couldn't rotate away from us, and then my husband kept him from coming over at us by putting a hand on the side of Milo's hip and holding him steady. Then I was able to lift his left foot and trim it without much trouble.

He was much more ornery with his right foot, and would quickly lift it up high to avoid me holding it where I needed it for trimming. So we trimmed part of it from the left side, since he would literally cross it over across his left foot and stand there holding it where we could reach it. And then finally we got him to hold still and get the job finished.

Milo has had his hooves trimmed without trouble before. We've had a professional farrier trim them once, and all the other times we've done the job ourselves. So we're not sure why he is getting finicky about having his feet handled now. We started handling them when he was just a baby, and he's five years old now.

Any ideas for working with a horse who doesn't like to pick up his feet? I'd appreciate any tips and comments!

_________________
DaisyKJ


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Picking Up Feet for Farrier Work
PostPosted: Mon Mar 29, 2010 2:51 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:32 pm
Posts: 71
I don't know a whole lot about hoof health (I've always had a farrier come and he used to come when I was at school so my horse had already had his pedi when I got to see him) but it sounds like he may be in pain. Did he look sound when you came and got him?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Picking Up Feet for Farrier Work
PostPosted: Mon Mar 29, 2010 9:36 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2007 3:57 pm
Posts: 195
Location: Iowa
Yes, he seemed fine, no limp or any sign of favoring his feet. The only thing I can think of is that I rode him a week ago down the gravel road, and really should have trimmed his hooves first, as on his hind feet especially the toes were grown out making him sit back on his heels a bit. This could have irritated the back part of his heels and made them tender, though again, he didn't limp or show obvious pain.

This was precisely why I was determined to trim them, as Milo has bad pasterns conformationally, and they tend to slant way forward and set him back on his heels in his stance. So yes, they could have been hurting him.

I'm going to keep them trimmed shorter in the front to help him with this problem. I didn't trim any off of his heels at all, since they tend to wear and hold their shape. But the toes need trimmed off frequently, so he is able to stand up on them better.

I'm certain the trim has helped him, if he was in any pain. Hopefully he will understand that we're trying to HELP him when we're messing with his feet! He did get a lot better after my husband was there to help...but I've got a bruise on the side of my knee from him actually kicking me that is sending off warning flags about him being a good choice for my kids to ride when they get a bit older! Kicking is never okay, in my book.

If you look in the Training Journals under Milo, you can see the slant his pasterns have...not good! But we bought him when he was a weanling and they didn't look like that then. It's really hard to be able to look at a weanling and tell what his conformation will be like as an adult. It's a science I'd love to master!
:wink:

_________________
DaisyKJ


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Picking Up Feet for Farrier Work
PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:11 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:32 pm
Posts: 71
I know that bad pasterns can affect hoof health - so since he doesn't have ideal pasterns, to help him out I would put pastern wraps on him whenever he's working.

You can try polos but they provide minimal support and take awhile to put on properly. I would try doing a figure 8 wrap, depending on how much support he needs. If you don't know how to do a figure 8 wrap, don't attempt it as doing it wrong can actually hurt him. Depending on the amount of support you want will determine what material you use -

Minimal support -> Polos (keep in mind these are tedious to put on and aren't worth it if you're just going for a 10 minute ride)
Modest protection -> Brace bandages (keep in mind these don't last very long and are best when new)
Medium support -> Vetrap and Coflex
Maximum support -> Equisport (this should be put on as close to the activity as possible. It is easy to put this on too tight or too loose due to it's strechiness)

If he's not in pain because of his pasterns, I would try getting a flake of hay and just practice lifting his leg up while he's eating so that it becomes a good experience... I agree that kicking out is also a major deal breaker but if he's in pain it's a whole other story. He also just might have been ticked off that he was getting his feet done - some of us have off days! :D


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Picking Up Feet for Farrier Work
PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:05 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2007 3:57 pm
Posts: 195
Location: Iowa
Lauren, thank you so much for this advice. I didn't know for certain whether wrapping his pasterns would help any, since I know absolutely nothing about wraps or even the fact that the wraps are meant to go that low on a horse. (I've seen photos, but have never applied a wrap or bandage.)

I'm going to look into learning to wrap a horse's legs properly. Growing up as I did, the only leg wraps I ever saw were a pair of splint boots my sister used for barrel racing, and I didn't know how to put those on even! So I am basically dumb about leg/hoof protection for horses, which is really sad considering my age and experience level.

I'm going to see if I can find someone locally who can teach me how wraps work. There is a lesson barn that might be able to help me out.

For Milo's sake, I just have taken his training slow (didn't ride him until he was 3 1/2 years old) and not put any heavy riders on him. He's about 14 hands tall, and small-framed like a pony, and I think he's well-suited as a kid's horse. I hope the pasterns don't get broken down or any worse. He doesn't seem to be in any pain now, but I know that may change drastically with age. He is just five years old now.

Thank you again for this advice. If it will help him, I'm definitely going to look into it.
:D

_________________
DaisyKJ


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Picking Up Feet for Farrier Work
PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2010 3:08 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:32 pm
Posts: 71
Here is a Youtube video on how to wrap a polo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHIPPbewmGI

She stutters a lot but the information is correct! I wouldn't wrap it as sloppily as she does though - it's best to put the polo against your thigh and smooth it as you roll upwards.

How long ago did he get his feet done by a professional? I would maybe ask the professional farrier to come in to see if he might need a specific type of cut to accomodate his pasterns.

Polos/Boots aren't really something you see on the casual trail horse (or on many Western horses except for barrel racers) so don't be too concerned! It's super easy to learn. :mrgreen:


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 6 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group