Friday, May 17, 2013

Ride 29 & Hoof Pictures

Since Faran hogs all of the hay I let Chrome eat his while tied to a tree (he has to be tied or he tries to eat grass instead) so that he gets enough.  It's convenient for grooming, cleaning hooves, taking pictures, tacking up (I rode bareback today though), etc. He's so shiny and the picture above is in the shade!

I rode for twenty minutes.  I cut the ride short because I thought he was sore from his trim on Wednesday.  It felt like he was short stepping when going down a slope, but when I got off and led him he was walking fine.  We've had a lot of rain though and his toes were digging into the dirt which made it feel like he was short stepping.  It's possible he is still sore, but I can't see anything when hand walking...

I also figured out why he's acting balky.  I thought it was because he wanted to try to eat grass, but he was balking on the driveway too.  After watching him for half an hour (while he ate his hay) I finally realized what it was.  It's because his legs itch!!!  I inspected his legs and they are covered in bug bites (or maybe sweet itch).  He was literally chewing on his legs every minute or two.  So you can imagine why he kept trying to stop while I was riding.  When I wouldn't let him lower his head (because I thought he was trying to get grass) he would walk on and stop again.  Poor guy.  Anyone have any suggestions for his itchy legs?  I'm going to start his Neem oil treatments again since the gnats are apparently back out already (normally this doesn't start bothering him until July or August!).  That will prevent new bites.  I need something to stop the itching from his current bites though.... it might be time to buy an antihistamine....

Anyway, back to the ride.  In the above picture we were standing in the grass and I left the reins on his neck.  He did not once try to eat grass or walk off.  Good boy!!  A+  It's good practice for standing still and patience though.  I bet you can't guess what happened next.... I put my camera away, picked up the reins by the buckle with my left hand and took my cell phone out of my pocket to check how long we'd been riding and.... he spooked!! This was the first time he's spooked with me on him.  Something from the neighbor's yard behind us spooked him, but all he did was jump forward (and boy does he have some JUMP when he wants to!) and trotted off.  He stopped when I told him to and everything was fine.  It startled me though because I wasn't paying attention, had the reins by the buckle and we were bareback... good reminder to pay attention while on horseback!!  He is such a good boy though.  :D

Now, on to hooves... I probably should do this in a separate post since I've already asked one question (about the itching), but I am sharing the big news tomorrow and Chrome's birthday is Sunday, so it would be Monday before I could post about them, so you just get one huge post for today.  :D

Here were his hooves before the trim...

Now you can see why I was practically begging my farrier to come out!  That's a LOT of growth in less than eight weeks!


Look at how much hoof she took off!


And these are from after the trim...

 Sorry about the grass.  I meant to get some on the driveway and forgot.

 Sorry the pictures suck and I only showed the left front.  I will try to do better pictures soon.  Anyway, it may not be obvious in the pictures, but my farrier does very little rasping at all and won't bevel the hooves (even though I've asked her to), so I bevel them myself (but haven't yet because I wanted to get pictures).  So what is you opinion on the trim?  How does his hoof look afterward?  What does it need (besides a bevel)?  Thanks for any advice!


  1. Oh forgot to mention he's not dragging his toes and I haven't seen his stifle lock since he got trimmed. :)

  2. I'm not sure what to do about the bug bites. I haven't had much experience with that. Calamine lotion if you don't mind him having pink legs, I suppose. It feels good on me when I get bit.

    I spent a lot of time today training the horses not to drop their heads to snatch up grass while I'm leading them and bathing them. P.S. has been letting the horses get away with that, so I'll have to let her know that it's getting to be a problem. It is hard to know if they are lowering their heads to graze or itch. I think itches should be allowed, but have known trainers who won't even let the horses do that.

  3. Oh yeah, and I totally forgot... Your spook reminded me of this story. When I was bathing Bombay today, I was torn between tying him tight enough so that he wouldn't graze and loose enough so that he wouldn't break his neck pulling back when spooked.

    Some twinge of intuition told me not to tie him at all, but to just hold on to the rope and stand on the other side of him. I did, and just seconds later a whirlwind hit, blowing my lawn chair straight up into the air and it came down beside us. Bombay freaked out and I was able to go with him because I had a hold of the rope. Had he still been tied, he would have pulled back and probably broke something in his panic, and had I been standing on the other side of him, he would have jumped right on top of me to get away from the lawn chair.

  4. Yikes NM!!! Way to go trusting your intuition! I'm glad neither of you were hurt. You're right though, those stupid whirlwinds do seem to be attracted to poor Bombay.

    I didn't think about trying calamine! I'll have to get some. I think I'm out. I usually use Benadryl cream on my bug bites, but I'd go through ten tubes trying to use that on him, so I'll get some calamine.

    I let him itch if I can tell that's what he's wanting to do. When we're on grass I don't know for sure which one he's going down for. I'll probably try to ride him only on the driveway or in the pasture for a while so I can let him scratch until it's healed up. Poor baby! Thank you for the suggestion!

  5. Tis the season for hoof growth spurts...

  6. Now you've been on Chrome when he spooked, so you know what that feels like. Sooner or later something will happen to make you fall off. It's all part of riding.

    The hooves are amazing. They grow so fast! Yikes!

    Mango Momma

  7. Yeah, Kaspin needs his hooves trimmed every 4 weeks in the summer! I can go 6 to 8 weeks in winter.

    Good luck with the itchy's. Bad bugs!! But at least winter is gone:)

  8. It's hard to see the hooves from those pics, but yeah 8 weeks is WAY long between trims! Salem gets trimmed every 5 weeks in the late fall/winter/early spring and every 4 weeks in the late spring/summer/early fall. And that's with me rasping in between!
    For bug bites on the legs, nothing beats fly boots. Salem wears them 24/7/365 and goes through a set every year, since we're in buggy Miami. I get the Kensingtons and they hold up really well. Salem would be absolutely miserable without them.

  9. Fly boots?? I'll have to check into those! Are they easy to get off? As mouthy as Chrome is I'm afraid he would tear them off or chew them up lol.


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