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Tractor Talk Discussion Board

Got all Horsed out yesterday!!! Long post warning LOL

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Posted by JD Seller on November 22, 2012 at 21:30:17 from (

I wrote about my grand daughters going on a trail ride last week. They had a blast and plan on going back next year for the early summer ride at the same place. The ride is for girls and women only. There where over two hundred girls/women on the ride. They camp out and the whole deal for the two days. The Summer ride is for a whole week.

All twelve horses got dropped off here Monday. The horse transport company will only haul them so many hours without them being stabled over night so they could not get the six horses back to the Chicago area without a lay over. I talked with the transport company and they are swamped right now an really did not want to do the final leg of the haul. They where going to charge the well off parents $1500 to take the six horses the remanding 175 miles. So I just told the parents I would finish the trip Wed.(school was out) The grand daughters could go and see how the other half (rich half LOL) keep their horses.

I have drop posts and gates the make my thirty foot livestock trailer into a six horse setup. It is not the handiest but is way cheaper than having a horse trailer around for a few trips each year. My younger brother and his wife have always had horses. So he uses it a few times each year.

So we loaded up and take of right at day light yesterday. The girls where all excited about seeing the big horse stables. The place where the horses are kept has 300 stalls. 150 of them are climate controlled ones. Those cost $2000 per month. The regular stalls are $1000 per horse. Plus feed. WOW makes feeding the brood cows look cheap.

The name of the place is some French name for Christi. I can't get my lips around saying it right and the girls just laugh at my way, so I just call it Christi's. It is about twenty miles south east of Lake Geneva, WI. It is in WI by about a half a mile.

We get there before lunch. My grand daughters met the well off girls there. They all took off for a tour of the place. It was real fancy. Real sharp looking and clean. I really felt out of place with my twenty year old pickup and common old aluminum stock trailer. I was waiting to told to go park around back so I did not make the place look bad!!! LMAO.

So I get my trailer all ready for the return trip and set down to wait for the girls to get back. Well they show back up with about five other women/girls too. One of them is the owner of the whole place. She was dressed in a riding outfit that probably cost more than my truck and trailer. Alice is her name. She is a real nice person.

Alice jumped right in and wanted to look at the girl's horses I had done the shoeing on. So the well off girls all went and got their horses. Alice wanted me to show her exactly what I had done and what had been wrong. I guess the girls Father had called and raised cain about the poor shoeing job. He had sent the pictures of the poor job to Alice.

Alice asked me if I would look at some of the other horses that the "bad" Farrier had done. I was real uneasy about doing that as I don't have any formal training as a farrier. I told her that. I just knew what My Grand Dads had shown me. I did not really know much else about a horse. Alice really twisted my arm to look at some of the other horses.

I told her I did not have any of the tools needed to do anything like that. She took me up to another part of the stables. She told me her family has owned the stables/farm for just at a hundred years. They have always stabled horses for Chicago people. Her Grand father was a farrier. They still had his shop/work area there and some of the farriers still used it. Well they have a real nice shop/setup there.

So Alice gets on her radio and calls some people. So they bring me about 25 horses to look at. She tells me that this is all of the ones the other guy had done at her stable. Ten of them where actually done pretty good. Those horses feet happened to fit the shoe blanks well. Then 7-8 of the others would do but really needed to have their shoes fitted better the next time they where done. So that left 7-8 that where terrible.

They all needed them redone. Alice wanted me to do it. I told her I was not in that business. I did not want in that business either. LOL. She talked me into doing the worst four of the remaining ones. She had another farrier that was rushing over in a few hours that would check the others.

I started with the one that was walking the worst. Alice told me this horse was not rode much because of behavior problems. Was not bad if lead but would try to buck/dump any riders that that rode him. He is real pretty gelding. So I removed the old shoes. His feet where in real bad shape. He is the type of horse that has fast growing hooves. You really need to be aggressive when you trim those type of hooves. So I really had to cut a lot off the bottom of his feet. On his left rear foot There was a bad spot when I got it trimmed back. I got to probing it. He had an abscess toward the center of his hoof. I just was working like I always do and Alice was yapping on her phone. How I have always handled an abscess is to drain it and let it drain while giving antibiotics at high doses. How to drain it?? Easy, heat a piece of hard wire red hot an burn a hole up into the abscess. Just like drilling a hole but it is cauterized so it will stay open and heal from the top out. So that is what I did. When I hit the abscess the blood and puss flew out under pressure. It sprayed all over the place. LOL about 4-5 of the girls watching got sick. Alice got sprayed. I sent one of my grand daughters to get my vet box out of the pickup. Alice was looking at me like I was from Mars by now. I had took my Vet supply box along so if I had any problems on the way over I had some stuff to use. So I figured the horse to weight at about 1800 lbs. I gave him a shot of penicillin to get him started to heal. I had some penicillin pills to use after that. I told the stable hand to give the horse one each morning and night for a week. Leave him with no shoes on and keep him in a dry area so his feet where dry. I also think that his behavior problems where caused by sore feet. I bet they can get him striaghtened out after his foot heals.

So I just kept at it and was able to use the old shoes on all of the other horses. They just needed to have a good hoof trimming and the shoes shaped to their feet.

I had noticed that there was a short teenager/young woman watching me real close on the last several horses. Alice finally brings her over after I finish the four horses I said I would do. Turns out she was the farrier that had done the two horses that went on the ride, that had a good job done on them. Her name is Mandy and she is twenty-eight years old just looks real young. Only 4 foot ten inches tall too.
She had about a hundred questions for me. LOL I tell her to pick one the worst of the other horses and she could start an I would copilot.

She picked a real big mare that had to have some work horse in her blood line as she had huge feet for her size. The horse's shoes where a good inch too small. There was a finger width around the back corners of the shoes. Mandy removed all of the old shoes and did a real first rate job of trimming them up. We then ran into the problem that we did not have any blanks that where near larger enough for this horse's feet. Alice and Mandy said they would just have to leave the mare without shoes until they could get some larger blanks ordered. I was kind of puzzled by that. So I just took two of the old shoes we had taken off the other horses an straighten them out. So I had two pieces of steel with a few holes in it but either would be too thin if shaped into a shoe large enough for the horse we had. So I just laid them on top of each other and heated them up until they where white hot. Then I forge welded them together. So I now had a enough metal to make a good shoe. So I just pounded the steel out into flat bar. Then I just made the first shoe we needed. This really got Mandy going she had never seen a shoe made from scratch. Plus never made one out of some scrap shoes. About this time one of my Grand daughters had found a piece of scrap rod that I could make shoes out of. So I worked with Mandy an made one more out of two old shoes and then showed her how to make them real easy out of rod bar stock. She was bouncing of the walls after that. LOL

Alice tired once again to get me to come and shoe horses for her. I said NO Way No how. Not in this life time. I told her she had a good farrier right there in Mandy.

So by this time it was getting late in the afternoon. The well of parents had shown up by then and insisted on taking us out to eat. Well I never could turn down a good steak. LOL The Dad wanted to pay me for hauling his daughter's horses. I told him we where even as he had paid to get my grand daughter's horses down to the ride. Real nice fellow.

So we went back to get my truck at the stables after a real fine supper. Alice caught me and had me talk to the Veterinarian that had come to look at the horse with the abscess. He just want to meet me. He had heard of draining an abscess that way but had never had seen it done. He told me that my way should work just fine for the horse. We will see. Alice is going to keep me informed.

Mandy is going to be coming over twice each month with some shoe patterns/measurements. She wants me to show her how to make shoes from scratch and how to forge weld. She also likes to make wrought iron things. I told her I would show her a few tricks my Grand Dad's showed me.

So me and the grand daughters had a real fun trip. Got to meet some good people. The girls had a blast. The family we hauled the horses for are going to come for a visit after the first of the year. So made a few new friends. All in all a good day.


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