Learning to trim Hooves, nervous!

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Learning to trim Hooves, nervous!

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  • 4 Post By gunslinger

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    07-14-2012, 02:24 AM
Learning to trim Hooves, nervous!

I always watch the farrier and ask questions when he comes, so he actually taught me to trim hooves on horses that are barefoot. I actually ended up trimming my own 2 ponies hooves with guidance! It's not that hard (except using nippers, that's kind of difficult since I'm not that strong). I'm just really nervous to go try it by myself. I don't think I will ever do anything more than just touch ups with the rasp or small trims, but still. It's kinda scary! I feel confident that I won't take too much off and stuff, I just really don't want to make a mistake. Do you trim your horses hooves by yourself???
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    07-14-2012, 12:31 PM
Green Broke
I do the same thing you do....just touch them up between trims.

There is some geometry involved and knowing what a horse needs in the way of angles etc.

As long as I can afford it, I'll let the pro take care of the major part.

That said, Obama is president and who knows how long we'll be able to afford the farrier.....
    07-14-2012, 09:48 PM

Yes, I started this 'game' by learning to trim my own. I think it's vital to educate yourself on the principles, hoof function & anatomy, not just the practice. I'd also continue getting the farrier to do regular trimming, or at least checks, while you do interim 'touch ups' only, until he & you are confident of your ability. You should be trimming regularly enough that there's no need for nips at all.
    07-14-2012, 10:57 PM
I do my horse's touch up trims between his regular trims and am still figureing things out 6 months later. It's not rocket science, but you do need to understand why your doing what you're doing. Luckily the reservations you're having about doing it yourself most likely means you won't go overboard and, if anything, do too little. Maybe do the first trim with your farrier there with you, so you get the advantage of having the tools in your hand but your farrier there to coach.
    07-15-2012, 12:59 PM
You can do it! Just realize that it with take a couple of years of practice and just move along with new things (and more challenging trimmings) at your own pace and comfort level. Stay friends with your farrier and keep watching and learning. There are a few good books out there, too!

I did the same thing you were doing at age 14. Here I am over 20 years later and I'm always the one putting pulled/lost shoes on horses with friends at trail rides, but I do not shoe for money and neither do I shoe other peoples horses other than what I mentioned above. I swear them to secrecy because I have no desire to become the camp farrier on a weekend getaway in the hills.

I only trimmed for years and years and only over the last decade or so learned to shoe. I had horses with navicular issues and learned from a WONDERFUL guy who was my farrier for two years how to trim and shoe for natural balance shoes, synthetic and shoes with wedges. Of course regular shoes as well.

If I can do this, you can too! Keep going at it and don't give up. What a great skill to have. Plus it gives you great biceps and upper body toning. Nothing wrong with that!

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