I just wanted to let you know how delighted I am with my “Mail Order Groom”. He is beautiful, and seems very quiet and sane and very sweet! I’ve not done much with him as he seems a little stiff and footsore (my farrier has also trimmed him), just some ground work, a little lunging and some ponying around the ranch…he even quietly stepped over some small logs, a few ditches and even the little tires…he did, of course, balk at the creek crossing (no fireworks or anything, just planted feet and a worried look) but he’ll be turned out very soon in the hayfields and will have to drink out of the lake…I’m sure the other horses will tease him until he gets it!
Elizabeth’s Note: Many times farriers trim the Thoroughbred foot too short. They have thin hoof walls and usually the feet need to grow out to be trimmed properly. The important thing to do is just get off the racing plates (with the dangerous toe grabs) and get regular steel shoes on to support the foot as it is growing. Little trimming is usually done at the first shoeing off the track.
And another subject that causes difficulties. . .
Elizabeth’s Note: As for the creek crossing . . . this is always the hardest thing for them to understand. They are not familiar with running water or having to walk through it. It sometimes helps to take them through a very wide and shallow creek to teach them that it will not harm them. A small creek is hard because they want to jump it to keep it from “biting them”. Groundwork will teach them to trust you and your horse will soon do whatever you ask because you have built up that bond.