Clearly, I have my priorities right.
A few weeks ago, Phoenix got his hooves trimmed and I've been meaning to show off pictures of his lovely stripes. Appaloosas, those amazing spotted horses, have striped hooves because of the pigment. The little Lady's hooves are mostly white except for one thick stripe in a hind hoof.
I was worried about some nasty cracks in Phoenix's hind hooves. My ol King had brittle hooves but this guy tops it. What happened to all those stories about the tough little Indian ponies with hooves like rock???? Not only does he have brittle hooves, he's a hoof growing machine. It doesn't even slow down in winter.
I do own a set of hoof nippers and I used to have a rasp... until it sprouted legs and walked away, which tends to mysteriously happen around here... but I'm not confident enough to trim hooves myself. I'll do an emergency trim if I have to. Imagine how bad a hangnail is on a horse. The thing is, I choose not to let the hooves get so ragged that I have to step in and fix it. I'd rather get regular trims by a perfeshnul.
So basically, I'll trim the cat's claws, maybe the dog if he's sleeping (he's a strong little monster) and I've been known to cut my husband's hair, but I'm way to picky to chance a hoof trim.
Here are Phoenix's front hooves, as he stood in his clean shavings and ate his evening hay.
(He's not really club footed, he's just standing like a dork. Must- get- face-- into --- grain-bucket!!!)
(And yes, I did get rid of that little piece of plastic from the shavings bag out from under his hoof.)
Let me just take a moment to reflect on how much I love this raggedy old barn. Yes, the ceilings are too low and the aisles are too narrow and the stalls are too small. But it's surprisingly warm in there. Cozy? And those shavings smell so good, and the horses smell so horsey. And the hay. I love the smell of hay.
Let's get a closer look. I love those stripes!
Here are his hinds. That near one is the one I was so worried about.
There is a surface crack in it, but we just have to keep an eye on it. So far it doesn't go anywhere that will cause problems. (And look at that long tail!)
His previous owner (whom I adore) told me the day I first looked at him that they'd always had problems with his hind hooves. They tried putting shoes on him but the shoes just fell off, and worse, the nails pulled out a few more chunks of hoof. Yeesh. No shoes for this guy. I prefer barefoot anyways, and have found an awesome farrier who only does barefoot trimming. She's a firm believer in letting the hoof function as it's meant to. It's more natural, healthier and yup, easier on my wallet. These horses aren't doing a lot of road work or high performance. They just don't need shoes. What they need is a regular trim to keep everything in shape.
Me however... I really could use a haircut. It's officially past that cool grown-in phase and into full on ratty. I'm having a hard time caring though. I really should get it done before I have to leave the house for a few days...
But today is all about my equine friends. Here's his handsome self! This is the first thing I see when I go into the barn.
I'd like to think he's happy to see me. I am really falling for this guy. I like him more every time I see him.
And everybody's sweetheart, the little mare. I couldn't get far enough away in that narrow aisle to get a good picture of her.
Hey little Lady, why the long face? Snort! Pfft! bwa hahahaha! (See the little brown shadows above her eyes? When Bucky was 6 or 7, he used to call them her "eyebrowns." It was so cute! I hope he doesn't read this.)
So I definitely spend more on the farrier than the hairdresser, but that's the way it should be. I don't walk around on my hair.