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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr. 30, 2013
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    4

    Unhappy Horse kicking farrier even when sedated.

    I recently purchased a 4 year old wb mare. Up until 1 month ago she was barefoot. She arrived to my farm with 4 shoes, so someone was able to shoe her... although not sure how. She is very green and needs a lot of ground work.

    Anyway today, she was a terror for the farrier. Striking out, kicking. She continued to kick and refuse to let us deal with her hind feet even after 2.5 ml of dormosedan gel (given prior to the farrier working on her) and eventually another .5 cc of IV dorm. In between attempting to pick up her hing legs she was lethargic and very much out of it. We stopped trying as it was a safety issue and I was not going to administer more sedatives without a vet present. This horse was fully vetted at the tune of $1200 dollars, there is no known pain issues. The concern now is she has very overgrown hind shoes on that either need pulled or reset. I have an appointment with the vet and farrier to reattempt shoeing. I understand this may all be fixed with training and time, but in the interim the horse's hind hooves need addressed. Anyone ever deal with a horse that wouldn't tolerate the farrier even sedated? I am at a total loss since this horse is normally very sweet to deal with.

    Thanks



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug. 30, 2007
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    Illinois, USA
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    May be a situation where putting the horse in stocks might be the safest solution for horse and farrier.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!


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  3. #3
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    Sep. 29, 2009
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    I really like the stocks idea.

    Or, on the ground totally sedated.

    Maybe she needs a chiro visit. If her leg hurts when picked up that might mean she is out in her pelvis perhaps. I had that happen to my mare, but she was/is not kicky, violent, tail swishy or anything like that. She kinda was really off balance and almost fell, but didn't. She got her shoes reset, and a chiro adjustment a day later.

    Be careful. Hoping for a positive future outcome.


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  4. #4
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    Jul. 10, 2003
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    Where is gets way too cold
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    In the mean time, while you are working on desensitization or training, I would not shoe her hind feet unless she REALLY needs it. Do what you have to do to get her shoes pulled and feet trimmed, and leave her barefoot in the mean time. Laying her down may be necessary. Whatever the case is, if she has this much of an issue about it, do what you can to keep her as compliant as possible for the farrier, with drugs if need be, so she doesn't come to associate the farrier with a stressful rodeo.
    Did she act up for hind flexions in the PPE? Is she OK for you to work on her hind feet? Maybe you need to try a different farrier? Is she OK with men in general?
    As Peter, Paul, and Mary say, a dragon lives forever.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
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    Apr. 30, 2013
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    I was not present for the PPE since it was out of state, so not sure how she reacted. She is pretty bad about picking out hooves etc. Not violent, but more green. She has the mentality of a yearling. Apparently she was not handled very much until January of this year.

    I am fine with pulling her hind shoes, I hope her feet will hold up with work. Her reaction doesn't look like a pain one, but more of a freaked out and scared reaction. The farrier is very quiet and kind, not at all threatening to the horses. If the horse needs to be laid out to even pull the shoes, would that need to be done at a vet clinic or could it be done just on flat ground? I will also look into taking her somewhere with stocks.



  6. #6
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    Sep. 29, 2009
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    You can have her laid out drugged at your place of choosing.

    They geld stallions at their homes, and many are laid flat out.

    My farrier is also very gentle.

    Maybe she is sore somewhere in her back. And she is reacting to the pain or possible pain???

    Be safe!



  7. #7
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    Jul. 10, 2003
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    Where is gets way too cold
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pony2000 View Post
    If the horse needs to be laid out to even pull the shoes, would that need to be done at a vet clinic or could it be done just on flat ground? I will also look into taking her somewhere with stocks.
    You just need a soft place, like an arena with soft footing or some grass to lay her down. Shade would be preferred
    As Peter, Paul, and Mary say, a dragon lives forever.


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  8. #8
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    Jan. 12, 2011
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    214

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    I have a big Selle Francais gelding who always was very weird about picking up his left foot. If you tried to pick it up he would either absolutely out right refuse or he would pick it up and then stomp it back down after a few seconds. We would have to sedate him to get his shoes on.

    Turns out that in that very shoulder, he had bursitis and poor or nonexistent banding in his tendon. It was incredibly painful for him to even pick it up.

    We are now treating the shoulder and he is more willing to pick up the foot.



  9. #9
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    May. 15, 2013
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    Canada
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    My yearling was awful for the farrier while she had pain issues, and it's improved a lot with simple handling. Every day I'd touch her legs, make a click, give her a treat. Lead to only a treat when she lifted, then as she held the leg up, now she lifts when you touch a leg and holds it until you're done. Took only a month.

    In the meantime I suggest full knock out, trim on the ground if needed.


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  10. #10
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    Aug. 30, 2011
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    Massachusetts
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    Ask your vet to draw up dormosedan with torbugesic, then you give it IV a minute or two before the farrier starts to work. The Torb + Dorm really keeps them from kicking. That's what I do for one of mine. I give it as the farrier is setting up. Works good. The vet will know the correct dose.


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  11. #11
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    Apr. 30, 2013
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    Thanks for the responses. Was feeling pretty defeated with her behavior, glad to know there are options. I will have him address any possibly soreness, but thinking this more of brain issue rather than body. Just don't want anyone to get hurt.


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  12. #12
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    Aug. 3, 2009
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    Why not ask the sellers about this, perhaps they have ideas. Also, it's spring, is she going into her 1st heat cycle and maybe a little sore somewhere. She is saying stay away, but why?


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  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr. 29, 2002
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    Doesn't kissing spine make it hard for some horses to lift their hind legs? It might explain the hoof picking and shoeing issues. A horse I rode before used to just rest his hind toes to pick his hind feet because he got really disoriented when lifting them up off the ground for picking. Not really sure how the farrier did it, because he did have hind shoes.


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  14. #14
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    May. 4, 2012
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    East Coast
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    I would definitely get the number for the farrier that put her shoes on and call them! If she was great for that farrier, then you've absolutely got a pain issue going on. If she was sort of bad but manageable, then it may be pain, may be your farrier, or may be some adolescent behavior issues. Also, definitely call your pre-purchase vet and find out how she was for picking up her feet and flexions.

    Also, don't presume a $1200 pre-purchase a month ago means she's not in any pain. "Lame" horses pass pre-purchase exams all the time. Sellers drug their horses, inject joints and vets miss things that are obvious in hindsight. And sound horses go lame all the time. There's a thousand possibilities.

    The only horses I've known to be that violent for the farrier were all in pain; either known issues that were being managed or issues later diagnosed. But that much disobedience would incline me to start talking to a few vets. Specifically the one that vetted her, and a lameness specialist.

    Good luck!


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  15. #15
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    Dec. 31, 2000
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    El Paso, TX
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judysmom View Post
    Ask your vet to draw up dormosedan with torbugesic, then you give it IV a minute or two before the farrier starts to work. The Torb + Dorm really keeps them from kicking. That's what I do for one of mine. I give it as the farrier is setting up. Works good. The vet will know the correct dose.
    That's what I had to do when I got a 5 yr old mare that hadn't been shod before, and not handled a lot. It took 2 shoeings with those drugs, and her having a good experience, then picking her feet daily, and she's been fine to shoe ever since...drug free.

    As a side note, because she was unfit, she had loose stifles, and one would occasionally catch, when you picked up a hoof, and she would kick out to free it. Make sure that isn't what yours is doing. Once she was fit, she has totally stopped doing it, so I'm sure that had something to do with it as well .



  16. #16
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    Jun. 1, 2002
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    Indiana
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    How often do you pick up her feet? I would make sure that you pick her hind feet up firmly yet quietly every time you handle her. I would give her a smack if she tries to kick you but ignore and praise if she's just nervous.

    When she's quiet for you to pick her feet up she will be better for the farrier.



  17. #17
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    Dec. 14, 2007
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    Wilsonville, Ontario, CANADA
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    Ive had several horses come in over the years that were downright lethal with all 4 feet and after attempting once to get them done, *I* called it quits so my blacksmith wouldnt get hurt. Its not "her" job to train "my" bad-to-trim horse and get hurt in the process

    She works with a lot of Draft horses, rescue horses, donkeys and mules (and talk about lethal with their feet - they can be the worst!) that are 2-3-6 years of age and never had their feet done and you need to be quiet, patient and innovative

    One trick she told me that really has worked well for all of mine is to get a soft lead shank and drape it down a hind leg, cup the ankle and lift it up that way, praise the horse, make it stand for 20-30 seconds with the leg in the air, longer and longer, let it down and repeat, repeat, repeat until it is old hat and ingrained in their brains. And then with a helper, lift the leg, have the helper hold the horse, and lighty run a rasp over it, praise again and let it down and repeat, repeat, repeat many times

    For the bad donkeys and mules, she would get a long soft rope around a hind leg and it would be tied up high over a beam or a thick tree branch. They would finish that leg, let it down and do the same with the next hind leg

    She never sedates them. Doesnt believe in it, nor do I. I want them to be 100% aware of what is going on so they learn and retain the lesson being given. What happens to them under sedation cannot be learned or retained. Its a quick fix "crutch" that does nothing for a long term solution to the problem

    Good luck!


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  18. #18
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    Mar. 27, 2013
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrueColours View Post
    One trick she told me that really has worked well for all of mine is to get a soft lead shank and drape it down a hind leg, cup the ankle and lift it up that way, praise the horse, make it stand for 20-30 seconds with the leg in the air, longer and longer, let it down and repeat, repeat, repeat until it is old hat and ingrained in their brains. And then with a helper, lift the leg, have the helper hold the horse, and lighty run a rasp over it, praise again and let it down and repeat, repeat, repeat many times
    Yes, this is "old school" but really does work, be careful the first time you put the rope/lead around leg, you may have to get her used to that first.

    Best to rule out any pain, did this with a new horse (that passed PPE w/flexions) that was not being cooperative, just buted before farrier visit to see if anything changed, no change in my case.


    Also don't rule out the farrier, I use 2 farriers, like them both, have a draft that was uncooperative for first farrier, and completely different and compliant with the second, who is more experienced with drafts. No stocks no drugs I say he gives off the "I'm not putting up with your s**t vibe", he isn't rough with her though, but she doesn't test him like she seemed to be doing with the first.

    As long as no physical problems it take time and patience, good luck!



  19. #19
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    Dec. 2, 2004
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    Eastern Ontario, Canada
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    I just recently had a kicking problem with my older donkey. She had been fine for the farrier for years. New farrier -- she kicked and kicked and kicked. I found this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lehpebjSJEQ and used this method -- just the loop part of it -- for the hind legs (she's fine for her front feet), and I had the problem solved in 3 sessions of about 5 minutes each.


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  20. #20
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    Nov. 4, 2003
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    Dallas, Georgia
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    Unless there is a defect or true 'NEED' for the shoes, have the horse properly sedated by the vet and laid down for the farrier to pull them. Then he can put a good trim on them.

    Then you can begin "pick your feet up nicely" lessons with her on the ground.
    <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.


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