So many things I have had to think about since I went to school and have come back.
I'll number them, no particular order.
1. Breeding season is in full swing: Think about it when you breed this year. When I was in school we got so many horses with poor conformation, poor attitudes as a result of poor breeding that no one wanted cause of someones decision to breed a horse instead of buying. Make sure the horse you are going to be creating is in demand, even if you don't plan to sell them now down the road you would hope they can have a good chance at a good home.
2. Especially paints. Now if you have read this blog long enough you will know I am not the biggest fan of paints. However having said that I do like a well bred paint I just have seen far too many come into that school and back home that were bred because the owner drank the "kolor koolaid". Half of them are bats*&^t crazy because they have some sort of genetic link missing from their brain which makes them short circuit at every obstacle in life. But they might have a pretty coat colour, never mind them having good conformation. They are not worth anything for a good, working/showing home because they are going to have problems and not be able to perform their jobs. I do not blame the horses nor do I hate EVERY paint horse I just have found more than any other breed paint horses are abused in the breeding industry. I blame the owners who breed low grade horses, I blame the owners for not dealing with behavioral issues, I blame the OWNERS. There are SO MANY unwanted horses out there and lets face it, the horse selling industry is in the crapper. Give another horse a chance and think about going to buy someone elses baby instead of breeding this year. This applies for all breeds.
3. Nature, seriously you can stop raining any time now. The sun can come out and we can break 60 degrees. Oh how I miss 95 and dry in Oklahoma. I do not however miss the dry, hard as rock feet though I smelled slightly less like a thrushy decaying hoof there.
4. I'm still not done unpacking. Nope, everything is all over.
5. I've had my fill of big, dumb horse with lazy owner. One barn I work at has this warmblood. Ok, a lot of barns I work at have warmbloods but this particular one is SPOILED beyond belief (See #2 about the owners). He was orphaned as a foal and although would be a very lovely animal he was treated like a big dog. Well said spoiled 1400 PAIN IN THE ARSE has the habit of sticking his gigantic block head out of his stall the moment I walk by to try and knock me out with his anvil of a skull. I've been warned he "play bites". Putting the word play in front of bite does not excuse the 1400 pound PITA. I shut his stall so he couldn't bite horses, or me. I am tall enough but hes taller. 1400 pound PITA bit me RIGHT ON TOP OF THE HEAD from over the top board of the stall.
I foresee a hair-on horse couch in my living rooms future.
6. Even though I have been home for two weeks, give or take a few days, it feels like I have been home for months. Months away from cool mornings in forge class, months away from shoeing untouched, crazy horses, months away from such good friends. Thank goodness for facebook!
7. Something I have seen a lot of wile back home: Not a lot of farriers check the lengths or angles of their horses feet to make sure they match. You can check length by fluffing the hair up on the coronet band and measuring from where the hairline starts to the ground with a tape measure or if you have them a set of calipers. Unless your horse is lame or has a serious one sided conformation problem theres no way hes going to take off a significant (1/8-1/2 inch can make a huge difference in how the horse moves) amount of hoof on one foot and not the other. Why does this happen? Well the ground, hair, environment or how the horse is standing can play tricks on the eyes of even experienced farriers. It was stressed so much in school to check angles with a gauge and length with calipers. A little bit off, especially on a horse that is being used can make them a lot off in the long run.
8. Sole. With the weather we have here as an extreme wet where horses are kept in stalls more than turned out or do not have enough of an abrasive surface in their paddocks. I am seeing a lot of retained soles that are hiding layers of chalky sole, past abscess holes and thrush that you didn't think was there. Layers and layers of sole that is not properly exfoliated will be breeding grounds for thrush. Remember last week when I was talking about being covered in thrush? That was really bad sole thrush that quite literally squirted out of the foot when I started taking away the chalky sole. Excess sole that cannot exfoliate also risks the potential of causing pain to the foot by placing too much pressure on the circumflex artery in the foot which in turn reduces circulation and can cause a whole mess of other problems and lameness's.
9. Just so you know I am not racist, I just happen to like less paints than most breeds so don't go getting your panties in a knot because it does not apply to all paint horses.
I do really like this paint stallion. They do a good job at raising properly conformed horses with good minds and solid upbringing. Lots of thought is put into breeding the horses on that property and I really haven't met one of his offspring I didn't like. They are local but are known all over North America. Good horses.
10. Keep the horse between you and the ground because the ground is really muddy right now.