Thursday, March 3, 2011

To Shoe or not to shoe!

This is the question of the century, if you own a horse!
I approached this question tonight at my USR meeting.
(Umatilla Sage Riders)
I thought maybe we could get a farrier to put on a simple 
seminar to instruction the unknowing,
like myself,
to be able to do necessary things when needed.
Like maybe file down my horses hoofs on a more routine schedule.
It would be like a pedicure,
keep the feet uniform.
But I found out that many horse owners do not know how to do this.

It seems that lately I have been running across websites that state
an owner should know how to do these things.

I know how to clip my dogs nails, and keep the cats nails trimmed.
I feel the need I should know how to do my own horse!

I was at a total loss this past winter when mother nature dumped a load of snow on us unexpectedly, 
and I found Libby was walking on 6" stilettos of ice.
I tried to pick them out.
I was going to grease the bottoms but I could not get the snow and ice build up out.
Boy did I feel helpless.

Called a lot of farriers but they were all pretty busy because I am sure there
are many people out there that are like me. 
(My farrier could not get to my house due to very bad road conditions.)

I was hoping to get in a few more days of riding before winter set in, 
but it was not to be.
(Hense leaving her shoes on)

So...I decision is:

I will leave it up to my farrier....

Libby loves him!

And, she instructed me to 
Leave her feet alone!

And..He is very good at what he does!


Lois Evensen said...

My goodness, well, if Libby loves him, then it is settled!

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

*snort* Is THAT your farrier? lol!

Well now wonder Libby loves him. hehe!

I prefer a barefoot hoof myself because it's the natural way for a hoof and is much less complicated on so many levels.
But I think it depends upon how you use your horse and what surfaces you normally ride on. Of course, you can also choose to use hoof boots for those occasional rockier sections of trail, so shoes can be avoided as well.

Some horses seem to benefit from temporary shoes while their feet are healing from other issues. And there are also some great ways to help toughen up a horses feet using pea gravel, so that shoes aren't ever necessary.