Monday, March 22, 2010

Hooves and hoofing it

Cibolo and I discussed his ongoing hoof needs. He wanted to know when he was getting new shoes. I told him that we were trying to strengthen his hooves, and then we'd see. He was not so thrilled. But he agreed to cooperate with the photo session. I'm posting these to create a record and track progress and, hopefully, the healing of the hooves as we try to transition to barefoot.

So, after a brief rinse off, we started. First the bare feet.

Using other photos I've seen, here's a few angles. Right rear. Um. Hind.

Left Hind. (See? I can learn)

Side view. Left...

and right.

Now to the front.

You can see here how high the nails went.

And the plastic gooey stuff to try to hold the structure together.

After our photo session, we went for a walk. It was cold and blustery, and all I was up for was some hand walking. This time it was just me and Cibolo.

We had a nice walk together. He leads so well, it's like having a large, really well trained dog. Then a few minutes of bareback - I was practicing having him stand next to an object and letting me get on. Walk two or three steps, then off. He's improving - he was avoiding mounting blocks and such and we're almost through that.

I still need a really, really high rock to actually be able to get on him without a stirrup. And he's not even that tall. 15.2? I think...

Makes a girl feel old.

Today, it's beautiful. Hopefully we'll ride.


Leah Fry said...

So far as I know, neither of my Boyz has ever worn shoes, not because I have any huge thing against it. My farrier, whom I trust, just says they don't need it. What has made you decide to transition to barefoot?

Unknown said...

Their feet have become damaged from shoes. I'm convinced. I'd like to see if they can go barefoot, even my farrier says it's healthier. So I figure it's worth a try.

Cactus Jack Splash said...

Best wishes on the transition. My guys don't wear shoes, some are better than others on rough ground

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

This is going to be an interesting journey. And I hope it's going to be positive outcomes on all accounts, too. Thanks for sharing this with us.

Baby Doll was 15.3 and I could barely mount her with stirrups without using a mounting block. I don't even think I could mount Apache bareback and she's maybe 14.2. lol!
Yah, it sucks getting old.


Paint Girl said...

I hope his hooves do better barefoot.
Brandy is barefoot almost all year. I only put front shoes on in July/August when I do a lot of heavy trail riding. But just started that 2 years ago.
Fritzy is barefoot in the winter since I don't do much riding then, and in spring/summer she gets front shoes. She can barely walk without them. I have tried leaving her barefoot all year, she just can't do it.
All horses are different though. Can't wait to hear how it goes!

Anonymous said...

He seems to have nicely shaped feet - good luck with the transition!