Monday, October 29, 2007

Lake Sonoma

Feather completed her first 50 mile ride this past weekend at Lake Sonoma. She did fantastic, I am so proud of her. We finished in about seven and a half hours ride time, and she got all As. I am so impressed. She had a great time and was a trooper. All the body work and massage we did on her this week really paid off. This was our first ride without Annie, and Feather handled it like a champ. Her favorite position was to be behind a group of horses, so I used that for motivation. My heart rate monitor helped me figure out when to give her breaks and when to keep trotting down the trail. We even got stung by bees and she just swished her tail for a while. I foamed on 4 easyboots, but I lost a front boot early in the ride and had to replace it with a Bare bottom and Up buckle top. That worked just fine. This was a fantastic first 50, I would recommend it to anyone wanting to try one with their horse. The leaves were changing colors and the vineyards were harvested, beautiful weather, great trails, I had a fabulous time!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Feather's first 50

Feather and I are going to try the 50 at Lake Sonoma this weekend. We are ready, I just hope to finish within the time allowed....

Pea Gravel

I spent the weekend adding 4 inches of pea gravel to my horses' shelter. We did an area 48' x 8' with 4 inches. It took 3 yards, and a lot of shoveling. The horses love it, their feet sink in nicely, and I know they are getting a wonderful hoof massage on every step. The manure is easy to clean, the pea gravel falls through the fork, like big kitty litter. Actually, pea gravel is very therapeutic for a barefoot horse, especially horses suffering from founder or navicular. It helps the blood perfusability in the hoof, as does comfort pads. Here is a link on an article on the Easycare web site : .

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Change In Weather

We have been receiving quite a bit of rain lately, and the ground is moist. So are the horses' hooves - they are transitioning from dry, hard rock-crunchers to softer, moister hooves. Unfortunately the rocks didn't get the memo and they are remaining just as hard as before the rain. I am using boots again on my training rides to give a little extra protection from the hard rocks, and I suggest if you are noticing any new sensitivity, just go ahead and use your boots. That's okay, that's what you have them for. I have been getting a few calls, "My horses were okay 2 weeks ago, now they are sensitive. What should I do?" Answer: Use boots.

Testing Adhesives

I have been testing out adhesives to keep the easyboots on without using the gators or the metal clips for training rides. The foam works great for competition, but for training rides, I thought denture cream or construction adhesive would work. I was wrong, the boots popped off immediately on the up hills. I probably didn't allow enough time to set, but I want something that will work quick on my training rides. Let me know if you have any other ideas for temporary adhesives.

Equine Body Work

I found an awesome body worker for horses - April Battles. She lives here by me in Greenwood. I highly recommend her, along with Tom Mayes. They both do Kinesiology, Acupressure, Massage, Rieke on the horses. I was blown away with April yesterday as she worked on Annie and Feather. Feather has a lot of emotional issues she has been internalizing, no doubt from her gathering from the wild, breaking up of her band, and living at the BLM facility for 10 months. Also looks like she had a trauma, like being banged against the panels at some point. April fixed a lot of the trauma areas and showed me what to do to release the muscles in the area and help her emotionally. April thinks we can get Feather moving more freely down hills and extend the length of her trot. April is also an expert saddle fitter and sells treeless saddles and Dynamite products. She is a wealth of information.

To contact April,

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Mustang Roll Your Hoof Boots

I just got finished putting a heavy duty mustang roll on all of my Epics and Bares to bring the breakover back and make them less bulky for the horses. I just used my regular trimming rasp and put a 50 degree bevel (approximately) from heel to heel, with a bigger roll by the toe. I'll let you know how it works out. I believe that just voided the warranty. Oh well, they were over 90 days old anyway. I can do this on your boots too when I am out trimming next. You don't have to do this on Renegades since they come with a very nice mustang roll already. The Bares have a very slight one, but I made it bigger and brought the breakover back at the toe. Off to try them out....

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Pete Ramey DVD Series

I started watching the Pete Ramey DVD series on natural hoof trimming. It is excellent. I highly recommend this for anyone who is considering trimming their own horses, or just want to know how to give their horses' the best care possible, including nutrition, environment, movement, booting, trimming, etc. He trims a bunch of horses so that you can see over and over again what to do. I think it is invaluable for me. This information should really help me increase the performance of the horses I trim.

More information at :

His book is great too, if you haven't read it already.