Friday, October 10, 2008

If the Shoe Fits...

If the shoe fits, then wear it, dang it!

Wally has a propensity for growing long toes and not enough heel. Many modern day American Quarter horses and Paints are prone to this predilection. In fact, when I bought Wally, his ex-owner told me three times, "Have your farrier take off lots of toe every time." How do I know she told me this three times? I counted.

I stay on top of it. Wally gets shod routinely every six weeks, which makes a considerable impact on my horsekeeping budget. I tried stretching farrier appointments to 7 or even (*gulp!*) 8 weeks, but Wally's toes got long and I didn't want to court disaster. Or a vet bill. So for the last few shoeing sessions, his feet look awesome. He's sound, he's comfortable, and I'm happy... if a bit poorer.

Yesterday I rode Wally on a long trail ride, all the way up to the golf course and back, and then down through the neighborhood. I figured he should have a nice, cushiony bed instead of sleeping in The Great Outdoors as usual. So last night I decided to put Wally inside his big covered and matted pen.Since I removed the divider, which once separated it into two smaller pens, the enclosure is quite roomy: 32 x 16. I also had heavy-duty wire stretched across the inside of the pen to make it even more secure, since Wally has a tendency to scratch himself on the fence rails and roll vigorously when he lies down. Plus I bedded it heavily.

To make certain that he didn't get the wire stuck underneath any of his EXPENSIVE SHOES when he rolled or slept, I put bell boots on all 4 of his feet. That way, I figured, he couldn't possibly yank any of those shoes off.


I came out this morning-- the first brisk morning of the autumn, I might add-- and my husband presented me with a slightly tweaked horse shoe.

"Is this Wally's?" Ron asked.

I believe the answer was obvious.

You know, there was a moment last night, during the application of the bell boots, when I considered slapping a round or two of duct tape across the heels of Wally's shoes, just so the wire couldn't possibly get underneath them. But did I do it? No.

"What's the likelihood that'll happen," I thought. "I mean, seriously, he's wearing bell boots that go all the way over his heels and to the ground."

Next time, I'll listen to that little voice in my head, the one that warns me about Wally's proclivity for mischief.

And thus I made a frantic, plaintive call to my farrier this morning.
If you have any comments-- shoe-related or otherwise-- feel free to click on "comments" below!


Anonymous said...

So sad what happened to wally's new shoe.I am a male Junior Equation Rider and live in N.Y.I tend to be lo on patients the morning of a big show.Six times over the show year my horse pulled his shoe ,ten minuets after he got them put on.These shoes caust me over 2,000 dollars for all 4 feet.Than another 200 dollars to get them put back on at the show.So i really do feel for you.PS hows cowboy keep us posted i love to hear about him.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I'm glad my horse's shoes aren't that expensive. Plus, in ten years he has only PULLED one shoe! Thank goodness! It costs me $50 for a basic set of rim shoes. And it's only $30 for a trim. (unless you have a mini, then it's $40!) LOL

Anonymous said...

Once I was loping my horse, and all of a sudden she tripped in a weird way. I pulled her up to a stop and got off to check her to make sure she was all right. To my horror I saw that she had stepped on the heel of her front foot and had twisted her shoe almost all the way off! Thankfully, however, she didn't pull any hoof off with it. I immediately pulled the shoe off the rest of the way and called the farrier.

Anonymous said...

Ooh-I am lucky my Percheron mare goes barefoot and gets her feet trimmed every 2 months. It only cost $30 too, which is lucky since alot of farriers charge more for a draft horse.
Poor Wally!

Anonymous said...

aww... sorry he lost his shoe! Duct tape is a life saver isn't it? lol! patches anything and everything! haha! glad the ponly i lease is barefoot!

Cindy Hale said...

Fortunately, my farrier just happened to be coming into town to do other clients the very next day. How lucky was that?!?! So Wally got his shoe tacked on the very next morning. And it didn't cost me anything. My farrier guarantees his shoeing, which is nice, especially since Wally pulled his shoe off on the fencing, not due to anything my farrier had done/not done.

Now if I could get the wind to stop, I'd go riding... UGH!

Jessica said...

I feel your pain..My boys are both barefoot, but their hooves grow so quickly, they get done every 4 weeks! Eek. Oh well- gotta do whatcha gotta do!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, my horse's feet grow extremely fast, too, but he's only ever lost a shoe once... and the farrier coudn't come until the morning of a show. Yee-ikes! He needs to get trimmed about every 5 weeks too... not good for a small bank account with close to 0 income... (Yes, I do have too much pride to get the stereotyipcal job of a teenager working at a fast food joint or waitress) said...

Outstanding post once again. I am looking forward to more updates.