Cadavers, Nippers and Knives - Oh My!

Over the summer, Spicy was experiencing some intermittent lameness issues. Lame might be a strong word - but he was definitely gimpy. It also aligned with some real sassiness at the mounting block. To try and piece together what the heck happened, I went through my ride notes and looked at Equisense data. I may be an analyst, but it wouldn't take anyone too long to find the pattern.

Armed with this new knowledge, I considered my options.
  1. Talk to the farrier. This is my least favorite option, and I almost never do it. If a farrier is trimming a horse a certain way, it's because that's how they learned to trim. It's one thing if I say hey he's tripping or slipping can we do something to mitigate that. It's another to say hey, he's lame the day after you hack job his feet can you maybe not do that?
  2. Find another farrier. An option that's problematic as I've tried almost every farrier in the area, and the ones I haven't tried are ones I don't want to try.
  3. Do it myself, for real. Find a class, or a farrier willing to teach me, and buck up and actually learn for myself.
I decided to go with Option #3. If that didn't work out, I dunno I'm just going to sell my horse and get into buying one of a kind art pieces and launching them into the Delaware with a trebuchet. If I'm going to set money on fire I may as well get Instagram famous for it.

It's hard to find someone to teach you. Most farriers and barefoot trimmers aren't interested in teaching because they want your business. We got lucky though - my barn owner found a woman local who was moving imminently, and not working currently due to an injury. She had knowledge, wasn't interested in taking new clients, and needed the business. We needed to download her brain. It was a win for everyone!!

Why it gotta be purple?

This particular farrier ascribes to Jamie Jackson's school of farriery (Blogger is telling me that's not a word, f you blogger). It's similar to a DVD/book set Sara got me for my birthday, done by Gene Ovnicek. They both did extensive research on mustangs and how their feet were 'done' by nature. I learned a lot about how horses feet work, and how they are designed to work, and how we as humans can help a horse's hoof work to the best of its ability.

I hope you're not reading this and going "oh god, Megan went cuckoo for Coco Puffs and she's going to start saying she only does barefoot and lead ropes are cruel and bits are the devil" but worry not dear reader! What I got from this is:
  • Horses feet were designed to move
  • We got in the way of that with how we keep horses
  • Get out of the way
I can't turn Spicy out on the Plains and frankly, I'm not sure he'd want to be. 

Seen here hiding in his run in at the first droplet of rain

But what I can do is as much as possible help wear his feet in the way they'd wear if he were walking miles a day to eat pine bark and drink muddy water.

That's when our Pedicure Professor pulled out her giant tub of frozen dead horse feet, and invited us to pick our favorite. Stay tuned for part two, where we find out exactly how bad my gag reflex is!! With surprising results. 

Of course I found purple farrier chaps.
What are you, new?


  1. Side note to say how much I enjoy your sense of humor and writing style.... okay back to the serious comment. I think it's super cool that you're educating yourself to take this on responsibly! I am lucky in that I have a relatively decent/reliable farrier and so I have zero desire to trim my own horse's feet right now, but it's definitely crossed my mind before. I can't wait for part two :)

    1. I say every time I do Spicys feet - I would GLADLY pay someone to do it if I found someone who did a good job. We are legit at last resort status.

      bc omg, farrier work is so hard

  2. Wow! Props to you! Doing feet is something I would never feel comfortable attempting. Can't wait to read on!

    1. me neither, but the class went a LONG WAY with my comfort level. being able to cut up some dead horse hooves made me realize I probably wasn't going to cripple my horse.

  3. Looking forward to hearing more about this! Based on the pictures you've posted outside of the blog you've done great!

    1. thank you!!! they're turning out awesome I'm soooo pleased

  4. I read this post and immediately got interested in the trebuchet business. Have you ever watched Andrew WK's show ' Destroy-Build-Destroy' it is a hidden gem. I think we could propose a show business model and pitch it to Andrew WK about launching art with a trebuchet into anything, maybe not priceless art because I don't know where we'd find the money for that, but what if it was famous art replicas and we trebuchet them in public places but didn't tell people they were replicas and videoed their abject horror? Like hidden camera or something...

    1. AHHAHA OH MY GOD you're a genius and we need to do this

      famous art replicas. the new xbox. a fake baby.

      I've got no shortage of ideas

    2. I've never been so interested in a potential show in my life.

    3. I would definitely watch that show.

    4. Haha ok I will pitch it to my producer friend and see what he thinks. I already know that Andrew WK will love it, totally up his alley!

  5. As someone who has trimmed her horses for 9 years now, I am excited and eager to hear about this journey!

  6. I have always had an interest in this. I'm excited to read more. And I saw your chaps and thought 'of course she found purple chaps' and then read the caption. :D

  7. Would love for you to come trim Rosie if you’re ever in the area! We are back to barefoot in work after quitting the $400 every 5 week shoe job she was in before I turned her out for a year. Somehow, sounder than ever! Can’t wait for Part 2. -Ali

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