need thoughts on hoof trimming a difficult horse - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 16 Old 11-23-2012, 08:46 PM
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I used to own a horse (long gone by now) who would only let me pick up his feet. Not even the most confident farrier could get close to his back end without him lashing out with a hoof. I guess he really was a one-person horse.
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post #12 of 16 Old 11-24-2012, 03:15 AM
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I second everything said on here, but make sure your farrier knows about how your horse is, before he gets there, i.e. Tell him on the phone and ask him if he is happy to attempt the horse.

My gelding used to do that also, it only took a few falls on his face to realize well hey, no I will not hold up your 700kg of lazy. He was also bad with one back leg, he would shift and sway his leg back and forth unless he felt it was held securely.

Just another thought from my own experience as my farrier had knee surgery a while back so I make sure to look after him real well... Tell your farrier, that if he does get under the horses back legs and manages to do them, that you would rather he did the telling off if the horse shifts as opposed to you doing it at the head of the horse and horse getting a fright and stomping all over the farrier who is in an awkward position.
My farrier in particular likes this arrangement for the back legs because he has had several horses that have shifted, or even done something the owner didn't like, like shift its head, and the owner has belted the horse, which has responded by jumping and moving, while the farrier is in a potentially dangerous position with the horses back legs. And because the farrier is in such close proximity to two lethal weapons, he/she will be able to feel every movement your horse makes and react accordingly.
Good luck, my horse was exactly the same to start with, I even went to the extent of wearing my helmet every time I tried to pick up his back hooves, just in case.

R.I.P ~ Bubbles - 25yo tb mare - 13.04.2011 ~ 8:30am ~ passed away naturally and peacefully in my arms
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post #13 of 16 Old 11-24-2012, 05:33 AM
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Like the others have said, "tell the farrier" and beyond that, you need to start working with this horse to pick his feet up. This isn't the farriers responsibility. You might be afraid to do it but you will need to find someone who can. A horse should have having his feet looked at regularly for it's own health. What if something happened and you needed to handle the horse to make it better? You or someone needs to get this horse over whatever it is that the problem is. Most horses handle having their feet picked up with just a little work.

Some farriers will use meds to "relax" the horse first if needed. Many will use ropes to protect them from kicks and many think "I don't get paid well enough to deal with this" and won't do it. I don't blame them. It would make me mad too especially if the person wasn't working to improve the situation and just let me come risk my life a few times a year to trim them.
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post #14 of 16 Old 11-24-2012, 09:10 AM
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It really does help to arrive 90 minutes ahead of the farrier and give the horse a good workout, get him tired. The horse will welcome the rest. Not fair to ask a farrier to spend more time working on a fresh horse that fidgets and fusses.
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post #15 of 16 Old 11-25-2012, 08:37 PM
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My mare did this when I got her as a filly. I assumed she did not know what it was I wanted. I took cotton rope and stood in front of her - put it around her fetlock and gently tugged, and she responded nicely by lifting her foot forward, I would hold it up/out for a short while and let the foot down slowly. I did that many times, then asked for the foot and she gave it right to me. She was unable to hold it for me for very long right at first b/c she hadn't learned to get her hinds right for balance. You have to help them in that dept at first...they'll get it. Now I have a new filly w zero training. She isn't as quick of a study, I use the ropes and she only "remembers" directly following the effort so I have to repeat it often. But it gets the ball rolling, at least. Perhaps your guy, regardless of age, doesn't actually know what you want.

Otherwise, I agree w all the other posters - give the farrier an clear description of his "status" up front and discuss the possibilities of drugging him, if it should come to that, when he visit (some won't ace for liability reasons).

There is just as much horse sense as ever, but the horses have most of it.
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post #16 of 16 Old 11-28-2012, 06:44 AM
Join Date: Apr 2012
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Take a long lead rope, slide it down to your horses back pastern and pull it up. Stand by his shoulder, that way your out of the way if he has a kicking fit. My filly went through a couple stages, one where she decided she was going to fight picking up her back feet. I did this until she quit fighting, then put it down. Picked it up again, and she was fine. No issue since. She also tried the laying down crap on the front feet. I had her in the arena and as soon as she laid down, I moved and smacked her on the butt with the rope. Sent her around a few times and she hasn't tried it since.
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