Calm, Forward, Straight

Calm, Forward, Straight

Sunday, December 11, 2011

In the Arena #94 - It's nice to share...

Friday was farrier day. My farrier has kindly agreed to teach me the basics of barefoot trimming my horse, since he may not be able to continue traveling to our island much longer. Several horse owners here skipped out on his appointments with no notice last visit. He drives seven hours round trip to get here... people just blow my mind with their ignorant behavior sometimes.

Anyhow - I did Val's fronts this go round. Will work on the hinds next time. I feel pretty good about knowing what to trim, how much and why... using the tools smoothly, positioning myself and holding Val's feet comfortably and safely are going to take time. (understatement) It went well considering. My farrier is a patient teacher who can put his knowledge into words - lucky for me. My horse has decent feet after two years of being barefoot, so I'm not having to correct any major issues - also lucky.

I tacked Val up for a ride after we trimmed him. Cowboy was already working beyond the far end of our arena. It's been a while since both horses were working at the same time. Val indicated that he'd like to stay at the far end and watch Cowboy work - like he usually does. It took some time and patience to convince him otherwise. After settling our little difference of opinion, we enjoyed a workmanlike ride - the high points being steady contact (foamy mouth), round 15m circles, decent transitions and some stretchy trot at the end of the ride. It was fun to ride with someone else for a change. For one thing, there was room in my tiny breeches pocket for treats since I didn't have to cram my cell phone in there. And it's always nice to have company when doing chores. A really good day at the barn. :)

Last night Val followed me out into his paddock while I picked manure. As per usual, while nosing about, he suddenly needed to munch on some discarded hay that had sat on the floor of his run in all day, until I put it into the manure cart (where it's desirability skyrocketed). I proceeded to jokingly offer him hay, one strand at a time. He politely ate for as long as I offered. After the snack, he rested his chin into the crook of my shoulder, quietly breathing onto my neck, while we watched the sun set behind the trees. *sigh*


  1. Sounds like a great ride. A foamy mouth is a treasure! Isn't it funny how they suddenly want to heat old hay once it's in the wheel barrow with the manure? Watching the sunset with his head on your shoulder would be a very special memory. What a sweetie.
    Your trimming job looks great. I'd love to know how to do my horses' feet. Lucky you, and think of the $ saved. It would be a great feeling of independence too.

  2. His feet are lovely - you'll do just fine. Wear gloves! That's my only advice :)

  3. I think Val's feet look nice and very functional. Some of the feet that show up at our farm (ok most of them really) make you do a double take, and not because they are pretty! You get quite an education in hooves.

    I can't believe your farrier makes a 7 hour round trip and people *cancelled* on him???

  4. Amazing trimming - what a invaluable skill to know - someday for inspire me to learn.

    Great single strand hay munching story and sunset with Val's head on your shoulder. How perfect is that? Life is wonderful for you and your Val boy. Enjoy!

  5. Teaching you to trim is really nice, what a good guy he is. Val's feet look great.

    Your ride sounds like you got a lot accomplished. It is always nice to have company when you ride too, isn't it?

    Love that he likes the wheelbarrow hay instead of his fresh stuff. Nice too that you got to share the sunset together.

  6. Love the trims!! And so glad you continue to enjoy the rides and the sunsets...:)

  7. Carol-
    No savings yet - I figured I need to pay for my education. But I won't be stranded in the future, and that is a relief.

    Thanks - I'm feeling good about his feet too. Need to dig out some pix from the very beginning to compare. You're so right about the gloves!

    I was so embarrassed about the rudeness. Poor Will - he's used to it apparently.

    There's so much to barefoot trimming - it could take a lifetime to learn. But hopefully I'll get competent with the basics...

    I love my farrier. He's really generous with his knowledge, if you ask. :)

    We're in a good place. :)


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