Tuesday, April 10, 2012

hoof notes, April 2012

I am so happy to report that this morning when the trimmer arrived two little donkeys were waiting eagerly in the barn aisle. We had halters and lead ropes on just in case Redford decided to skedaddle - post gelding, all done with antibiotics (he took the last week's worth whole in his feed tub and just crunched those things right down!), he is still a bit skittish about folks driving up to the barn with equipment in hand.

However he stood bravely this morning, took a nice long sniff of the trimmer's apron, and seemed to assure himself that this was in fact a benign operation he remembered with no trauma attached. He went first and was a little champ.

Rafer Johnson wanted to go first, which made my heart warm. After two difficult trims due to white line disease he is now over the hump with that and back to his trusting self. That he wanted to go first let me know he was better, and indeed he is. No hoof wall had to be removed today and we are very close to being all grown out with tight, healthy connection. Thanks to our trimmer who was able to get in there and remove the yucky stuff, thanks to husband (and daughter) who have religiously picked little hooves and applied Banixx, and thanks to the supplement called Kombat Boots, which I suspect helped us get through this last five weeks with lots of growth.

Salina went next and I continue to be grateful for R. for not assuming Salina cannot pick her hooves up and put them on the stand. She can, and does, and this allows her trims to be much more accurate. Her angles are better now, and I think the stretches she gets also do her body good.

Apache Pony was not all that thrilled with his turn, but he rarely is when it comes to getting hooves trimmed. He settled down once I got the clicker out. Fortunately he has healthy, picture-perfect hooves anyway so his trims go fast.

Cody went next and he is doing well. Daughter had braided his forelock and I admit I was so taken with his handsome face beneath that fat braid I do not remember what the trimmer said about his hooves! But if anything were amiss she would have made sure I listened. He's doing well in general since I increased vitamin E, magnesium, and his ALCAR. Springtime for PSSM'ers can be tricky, but I think we're on track again.

Keil Bay came in when it was his turn - about 5 minutes before we were ready for him - and began to bang on his stall door for his trim. When he was escorted out of the stall, he went to the gate and banged that. Keil Bay loves anything that puts the attention on him, and his hooves are doing so beautifully under the care of R. that he seems especially happy to show them off. I could not be happier with how his feet are progressing now that the heels are being taken down enough and the frogs are getting lots of stimulation.

Between the good trims, the well-placed gravel we've put in, and balanced diets, things are looking good right now.

We've not had issues with soft hooves around here, but the entire herd have been on Kombat Boots for 5 weeks now and their hooves today were hard as could be. It could also be time of year and our weather, but I think the supplement added something beneficial to the mix. I'm definitely keeping Rafer on it until his front hooves are completely grown out again.

Thrilled to report good hoof notes this go round!


Grey Horse Matters said...

It does sound like everyone's hooves are perfect. I think it mostly comes down to your great care for the herd.

Redford is one smart little guy. If I was him I wouldn't trust anybody with equipment in hand just yet either.

billie said...

A, our trimmer had emailed me the night before asking if another trimmer could come along (the other trimmer is learning and needs lots of observation time) and I said no. I am, as my husband informed me, a private person, but aside from that I didn't want Redford feeling more stressed than I knew he already would be.

I guess this is an example of my philosophy about equines and stress - of course he could have managed it, and would have had I agreed, but why should he have to?

There's a theory in psychology having to do with stress thresholds and PTSD and I think about this when making decisions about children and animals - there are enough times in our lives when we can't choose to avoid stress - so the times when we can choose, why not make the choice to do without?

Calm, Forward, Straight said...

Oh no - another great sounding supplement... ;)

Glad all the November hill hooves are in order!

billie said...

C, I love the name of it. That said, I'm talking with HorseTech about adding their yeast product (which I didn't realize they even had) to my custom B mix for ease of use. (and one less bucket in my laundry room!)