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CowgirlK 02-03-2012 07:17 PM

Hoof picking up problem..?
Okay so everytime I pick my horses hoofs up she will pick it up for 2 seconds and expects me to hold her foot up. Which I know is NOT possible! :lol: Are there any tips and/or tricks to teaching her to stand on 3 legs so I can clean her feet out? I want to make sure there are no problems with her feet incase I have to call the farrier. I do continue to try and pick her hooves up everytime I see her she is getting a little better. Should I continue what I am doing?

Skyseternalangel 02-03-2012 07:23 PM

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My horse does that with his hinds, so I started to hold them up less and less and less. Meaning instead of supporting the entire foot, I'd start supporting only the toe, and now he picks his own feet up.

What helps, though, is making sure they are standing as square as they can manage.

CowgirlK 02-03-2012 09:08 PM

Okay thanks for the tip! I will try that! :)

Lexiie 02-04-2012 09:34 PM

I had to train my horse to pick her feet up.
When you pick up her foot, lean against her to force her weight onto her other legs.
If she wasn't previously trained, don't even pick her feet yet. Just work with her being comfortable with picking her foot up. Pick one up and hold up for a little. If she tries to put it down, hold it higher and then drop it. That's teaching her she can't have her way. Do it with the other front foot. Once she's comfortable and stops trying to pull away from you, pick her feet. Then go to her back feet and just pick them up and then put them down. Eventually she'll get the idea and pick her foot up when you lean down to it.
I did this with my mare and she had it down pat in a week.
I hope this helps(:

Saddlebag 02-04-2012 10:52 PM

If she hangs weight on her leg, quickly let go. Not on cement tho. Usually this startles them enough to pay attention. Pick up her foot again and if she again hangs it, again drop it. It usually takes a horse two or three times to get the hang of what is happening.

NorthernMama 02-04-2012 10:57 PM

Sky, that's a great idea! I've never heard that before. I have a sometimes leaner; I think I'll try this with her.

CowgirlK 02-05-2012 12:58 PM

I have tried picking her feet yet. I'm just working on picking her feet up right now. I do know to lean into her and try picking her foot up. :) These tips are very helpful! Thanks everybody! I don't think anyone has ever tried picking her feet up before, so I'm going to teach her! :)

NorthernMama 02-05-2012 02:20 PM

I don't agree with Saddlebag's method. To me that teaches the horse that if he leans, he gets his foot back. I have just continued to hold on to the foot and allow the horse's weight to continue to come. If the horse leans enough, they'll end up on the ground; they know that and will usually stop before that point. That's why I really like the toe method, although I'm trying to figure out how to maintain that hold on the toe when the balance is going all wonky :)

tobytom 02-06-2012 08:42 PM

The problem is that he is putting his weight on that foot (or that side of the body). The best advice up here that I see is to lean on him. If that doesn't work (some of the more clever horses won't budge if they don't want to) then slightly pull them forward (or backward, depending on which foot you want to access) by the lead rope/cross tie chain - not much just one foot. This will make them shift the weight up/down.
This is easiest if you have a helper for the first few times until the pony gets the idea.

If even THAT doesn't work (or if u are alone and just can't keep his weight shifted until you get to his feet), then to get him to pick up his front feet, there is a simple trick :

using YOUR feet, just tap him right above the heel on the tendon. He will move the front feet a step forward, and the weight shifts off, pick up the foot.

Once the foot is up, just hold it there, for as long as you can but make sure to drop it BEFORE he leans back in.

u mite get only 1-2 seconds at first, but that is ok ... keep doing on the same foot over and over again, until u can manage to keep it up for about 5 -10 min.... once u get one foot squared away the others should be easier...

Of course I am assuming you know the horse and all this is safe to do with him.... If he is particularly shy/scared/hurt etc, please find professional help outside the forum :D .. .

Sorry to make it sound like a big deal, but I once groomed more than a dozen horses and had to teach many of them (Esp. babies) to pick up feet..... so I am well aware of the angst !! hope this helps..

CowgirlK 02-07-2012 11:52 AM

Thank you! I got her in November and she is broke to ride but a childrens pony I believe. She is my first official horse. I've read as many books as I can find, but no horse is exactly like a book. :) I've been working on picking her feet up whenever I can work with her. I'm working on alot of ground work right now. Thanks for the tips! :D

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