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How far is too far for a farrier?

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  • #41
    I didn't hit the horse, the farrier did, please read the first post

    Didn't you just post recently that you KICKED your horse in the face? For rubbing on you?

    Seconding the people that say get out of horses, it's not for you; certainly not if you can't control yourself and provide for your animals. That means no beating them or letting them get beat. There are NO excuses for your poor animals to be beaten six ways from sunday. They're big animals. You're going to get damn hurt if you keep putting yourself in these situations.
    They're small hearts.


    • #42
      And - reality check time - there are good farriers in DressageJunkie's area. They do not charge $100 per shoe. They do not hit horses with rasps or whips. They will give an open-handed smack on the shoulder to a horse that needs it; then everybody settles down and gets back to work. I agree that this thread seems to be going the way of so many others with this poster: she IS a kid, and she does NOT have the training or background to teach her relatively green horses herself, and she WILL NOT listen to anyone on this bb that says so.

      I am very sorry for the horses.
      Incredible Invisible


      • #43
        OK, D.J. As it happens I have a young horse who was terrified of farriers when I got him at age 2. Why? Because of some farrier who beat him at his former owner's place, and he never forgot it. Not only was he scared of farriers, he was scared of men also.

        First thing we did was work on getting him to trust men. Which meant, my male friends and even my non-horsey husband started helping me handle him, just simple things like brushing him, giving him treats, talking to him, etc.

        Meanwhile, I worked on getting him to let me pick his feet up, starting with the fronts, which he was better about. Once he let me pick his feet up without a fuss, I worked on getting him to let me hold them up for a few minutes (I would kneel carefully and put rest his leg on my thigh, like a farrier does). Once he was comfortable with that, I would take the side of a hoof pick (usually the handle) and tap, tap, tap. All the while talking to him. He knows "good boy" and "whoa" very well; use whatever words you ordinarily use to reassure your mare. And when she does any one of these things well, immediately reward her like she just won the Kentucky Derby. Big pats, lots of praise, and a treat.

        Anytime I am training my horse to do something new, if he gets nervous or fusses I just stop whatever it is I am doing, stand next to him, and I wait. And wait. And wait. He will almost always then take a step towards me, or give some other indication as if to say "Hey, why are you just standing there." Then I will resume what I am doing.

        You need to really watch your horse and pay attention to her signals. Sometimes horses may act up because they are cranky or bratty, sometimes it is out of fear, or because they don't understand what you are asking from them. You need to try to understand why your horse is acting a certain way, and then respond accordingly. Which means, understand when your horse needs reassurance, and when she needs APPROPRIATE discipline. It is very important to be consistent so your horse understands what messages you are trying to convey.

        From your posts, it sounds to me like Sheza more ofte than not is the type that needs reassurance and confidence building. So you are going to hae to be very patient with her, and let her know that she is safe with you.

        I hope that helps a little. It is a bit difficult to articulate some of this because so much of it is a question of feel, and a sensitivity to what your horse is trying to tell you. Some people have a natural ability to do this, others develop this ability over time by gaining experience. But in all cases, IMO, a person's ability to communicate well with their horse depends on how much they watch and listen carefully.
        Roseknoll Sporthorses


        • #44
          DJ, against my better judgement I'm going to give you some advise that you can do yourself to help Sheza perhaps stand still for the farrier.

          Go out and buy a rasp. When you pick up her feet, use the fine side, and run it over her hooves, extending the time that you do it for each session (unless you keep her shod, then I guess that goes out the window). If you have a farriers hammer, you could just tap the bottom of her feet, just do different desensitizing things with her legs and feet. Rub them with bags, ropes, cloth, be creative. Each time you pick up her feet, keep them up longer, and don't just hold them there; put the hoof between your legs like the farrier, jiggle them, do different things. Try also to find a female farrier. You need to change as many variables as possible from the last visit from the farrier.

          I really do hope you have success with your horses. I'm just afraid that you've taken on to much for someone of your age, and experience.
          "Riding: the art of keeping a horse between yourself and the ground."

          ~Horsebiters Clique Founder~Drafties~The A Team~Anti-Kohlrahbi Proliferation Group~Elite Closet Canterer...by proxy~


          • #45
            Originally posted by ~DressageJunkie~
            She reared when I was lunging her, then again when he lunged her.
            Okay, maybe I got confused by the timing of events. But, once she reared or indicated that she wanted to rear, one should not make her run backwards. Just an FYI for the future.
            Roseknoll Sporthorses


            • #46
              Originally posted by ~DressageJunkie~
              She has never been great, but she was getting better. When I first got her she wouldn't even pick up her hind legs without kicking thte crap out of you, and know she will pick all four, she doesn't like her leg between the farriers though.

              I think some of the discipline is fine, but not enough to cut her and have her cower down when I go to pet her. She is just a sensitive horse and that doesn't help.
              Well you can bet the farm on it that she will be even harder for the farrier to trim/shod next time! If she is as sensitive as you say she is, it is going to take a ton of positive reinforcement to earn her trust back with regards to her feet. Perhaps if you were not so busy defending and trying to clarify/justify your previous posts and instead put that energy into something positive like all the helpful suggestions you have been given, you might just get somewhere with your mare.


              • #47
                I said it once, I'll say it agian...you do NOT deserve to own horses, and have absolutely NO idea what you're doing with them. ESPECIALLY green, sensitive horses. You're well on your way to causing both of these horses lasting psychological harm. That will probably sound harsh to some, but it's true. I've seen a lot less than this type of $#!^ to permanantly screw with a horse's head.


                • #48
                  Ugh. I'm not a softie. I don't tolerate bad behavior in horses, but I don't tolerate someone beating on them either. A measured smack for bad behavior is one thing, Getting angry and raising welts is entirely another.

                  In my life, I've fired two farriers with a temper. Doesn't work for me. I don't live in the Good Farrier capital of the universe, either, but I found someone who knows what he is doing and keeps his temper in check. Yes, he costs me $30 more for a set of shoes than the angry guys. But it's worth it in every way.


                  • #49
                    Geez Everyone! Just calm down before I smack YOU with a with file and take you to a round pen and chase you with a whip!

                    Yes, she didn't say anything to they guy about him beating her horse, but kids are conditioned not to question adults in this country. If this is really eating your soul, make it known to kids that they can question you.

                    Also, I am 17. My farrier is a tall guy, probably weighing in over 200lbs and towering over me. When I was 14 and if he smacked my horse with a file, I would stand shaking at the end of the line.


                    • #50
                      It's all relative

                      Uh, Dressage Junkie...

                      I haven't read all three pages of posts here but have read enough to feel compelled to weigh in: A farrier hitting a horse with a rasp is not necessarily abuse. The fact that this farrier was even willing to work with a seriously misbehaving horse says something. However, lunging to get a horse tired or whatever so it will stand to be worked on isn't your answer. All lunging does in this context is get a horse fitter and thus harder to tire/work with. Lots and lots of work and correct training are the answer. If she were mine, I'd first have her thoroughly checked by a vet to make sure all is well. I have seen farriers wrestle a sore horse's leg into an awkward position and when the horse reacts, things degenerate. In fact I have an old saint who has always stood well for the farrier, but in his ultra-arthritic condition, he will complain now unless given bute well in advance of the trimming.

                      You might also ask your vet if mild sedation is an option that should be explored for a few sessions- I don't use sedatives on my horses but know that it is helpful in some cases. But mostly, just lots of time. You can pick up the feet but the farrier can't - so bribe friends, family, total strangers to just wander in and take turns picking up feet. Get the same farrier or another to schedule some extra time (and pay for it!) to just work with her and get her feeling better about having her feet worked on.

                      Basic principles to remember when you are trying to work through any issue: Convey the impression (even if untrue!) that you have all day for her to decide to do it your way, and be patient, but persistent. Make the 'right' thing easier to do than the 'wrong' thing. Declare victory when small successes are achieved, and don't push those successes until they become failures, just let well enough alone til next time. Don't ever 'lie' to a horse or 'trick' it into doing what you want, makes it that much tougher to maintain trust and achieve obedience when it's needed.

                      Just some random ideas, seems to me the whole idea is supposed to be to give help to people, not flame them when they come posting asking for help...none of us is 'the' expert but collective wisdom can be useful.


                      • #51
                        Ok guys, I want to give you a little insight. For the record, I went to college in KS, and married a Kansan, and while in KS I found an interesting, but luckily small, sub-set of Kansans that are brick walls. Fortunately I've only met a few.

                        Anyway, there is absolutely NO REASONING with them. Case in point: I had a friend, she was twirling her professionally dyed hair with her professionally done fake nails bragging on her fabulous cable/internet deal (ONLY $130 a month!). Later she complains that she can't get any more Victoria Secret underwear because her card is maxed out and her father-in-law had to pay the last 3 months of electric bills because they didn't have enough money. When I mention she could probably pay the electric if she would do something so drastic as cut back her cable, stop paying $40 a month on nails, $100 a month on hair, and stop buying $20 underwear, she gave me a horrified look. Doesn't she deserve to have her hair and nails done? Doesn't she need to have nice underwear? Isn't cable considered a necessity? Answer: Ummm, No. If you can't afford it, and you can live without it, then you don't get it. It was a concept that she just could not grasp. She actually had her electric shut off, but the cable bill was still paid on time. It was so mind boggling...

                        The OP is the same way. She's not going to get it. She's going to ruin both horses, sell them off because they are too much for her, then get some new ones, and wonder why she has such bad luck in buying such horrible, out of control horses. She'll be crying the whole time, proclaiming her love for the horses, and if only they weren't such problem horses...

                        Just my speculation, but I believe the parents think this is just a fun little after school project for her, and it will be good for her to train her own horse.

                        DressageJunkie, you're in over your head. Plain and simple. Tell your parents you need help. Are you in 4-H? They usually have horse project leaders that can at least show you how to lunge a horse properly! Someone is going to get hurt, and more than likely that someone will be you. This is a trainwreck in the making, and everyone can see it coming, except for you because you're sitting on the tracks.


                        • #52
                          Originally posted by Beverley
                          Uh, Dressage Junkie...

                          A farrier hitting a horse with a rasp is not necessarily abuse.
                          I completely disagree with this statement. Particularly with a horse that is nervous about the farrier.

                          If a farrier ever tried to pull that on one of my horses, I'd boot him off my farm so fast he/she wouldn't know what hit.

                          DJ initially asked if the farrier went to far in how he treated her mare. The farrier had hit the mare so hard with the rasp that he cut her side. IMO, there is no question that that was abuse. And I will go a step further and say, as I did before, that there is absolutely no justification for hitting a horse with a rasp. Flat of the hand, maybe. But honestly I have rarely if ever seen anyone be able to calm a nervous horse by hitting them.
                          Roseknoll Sporthorses


                          • #53
                            Along the 4-H lines.... do you have a local pony club you could join? There must be someone who could give you some help with these horses.
                            Roseknoll Sporthorses


                            • #54
                              Or someone who could take them off your hands for you...


                              • #55
                                I get sick to my stomach reading post by the OP. These are the horses people on the board will one day rescue from a slaughter house/lot where they end up because owners kick them, allow others to beat on em and plain have no sense owning horses. We all see them and hear about them. They are the ones who will hope to be given a second chance. The kicker to ignorance in this whole post... farrier got the horse "lunging nicely like she used to" "I hope tomorrow she will remember it". Ugh ignorance and horses go figure.


                                • #56
                                  Here we go again.

                                  DJ, when are you going to wake up and realize the common denominator in all the problems these horses have is YOU?

                                  You have one horse who terrifies you because he does things a typical youngster does. Oh and YOU KICKED HIM IN THE FACE, yet you are here whining that your farrier disciplined your spoiled BADLY trained horse?

                                  You have another horse who doesn't respect you, has un-learned how to longe under your care, doesn't stand for the farrier, and at her age she damned well should. The behaviors you've mentioned are dangerous.

                                  You need to sell these horses because YOU are clearly not capable of disciplining or training these (or any other) horses.


                                  • #57
                                    Deep breath.

                                    DJ: You are young. Get the horses a new home, sell them.

                                    If you love horses and riding so much, make it easy on yourself.

                                    Go take lessons on experienced horses. If you want to be around them more than that, much stalls and groom at the place where you take lessons. Learn horsemanship from someone who can teach you the right way to handle these lovely animals.

                                    You are just frustrating yourself and your horses because you are young, inexperienced, and you are not ready for the responsbilitis of ownership.

                                    I'm not being nasty when I say this. I'm not trying to "flame" you. Just want to be constructive.

                                    Horse ownership is frequently not fun. Involve yourself in the fun part first and then make up your mind if the hard part is for you.


                                    • #58
                                      Originally posted by escondi
                                      Deep breath.

                                      DJ: You are young. Get the horses a new home, sell them.

                                      If you love horses and riding so much, make it easy on yourself.

                                      Go take lessons on experienced horses. If you want to be around them more than that, much stalls and groom at the place where you take lessons. Learn horsemanship from someone who can teach you the right way to handle these lovely animals.

                                      You are just frustrating yourself and your horses because you are young, inexperienced, and you are not ready for the responsbilitis of ownership.

                                      I'm not being nasty when I say this. I'm not trying to "flame" you. Just want to be constructive.

                                      Horse ownership is frequently not fun. Involve yourself in the fun part first and then make up your mind if the hard part is for you.
                                      Hey escondi, you said kinda what I said, only nice.
                                      "Riding: the art of keeping a horse between yourself and the ground."

                                      ~Horsebiters Clique Founder~Drafties~The A Team~Anti-Kohlrahbi Proliferation Group~Elite Closet Canterer...by proxy~


                                      • #59
                                        Maybe next time, you could have the vet sedate her beforehand. DON'T do it yourself, have the vet do it (much safer that way). It's not the ideal solution, but at least she'd be quiet enough that the farrier wouldn't have a reason to beat on her. And maybe, after a few good experiences, she could go without the sedative.

                                        My horse hates having his front feet done, and does need to be sedated. Even then, he's a pain sometimes. My farrier is A SAINT...never loses his cool, never hits the horse, and turns everything into a productive schooling session; if my horse tries to go backwards and slam a foot down, the farrier WON'T put it down if he can help it. He also takes his time, putting in two nails, then letting my horse put the foot down for a minute.

                                        I also know another farrier who, when trimming one VERY arthritic horse, figured out he could cause less pain if he didn't pick up the hind feet at all. He'd just push the horse over until it "cocked" a hip, then got down on his knees and trimmed/rasped the foot in a vertical position. You could just see that old horse saying, "Thank you for not tweaking my hocks!"

                                        Neither of these farriers is "expensive!" I do think, DJ, that you can do better than this a$$wipe; just keep looking and asking around!
                                        Last edited by SBT; May. 31, 2006, 01:45 AM.


                                        • #60
                                          Does the horse always cause problems when you trim her feet? Do you often have to use restraints to hold her?
                                          I've got the 3 things men want. I'm hot, and I'm smart!

                                          -The 6th Member Of The Bareback Riders Clique-