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 Horse Farrier Trim
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maryjane

6942 Posts


Posted - Jun 03 2015 :  1:39:18 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Julie Hopper, who comes out 3x/wk to help me with my cows, suggested her horse farrier might be willing to help me trim my cows' hooves. The last time I had a cow on the vet's tilt table, she was foaming at the mouth, her eyes were rolled back, and she kept holding her breath until I finally pulled the plug on the whole endeavor, saying, "Either she's going to die of fright or I am."

Because I have a smattering of cows raised by others, not all my cows are comfortable with having their feet touched (it's all about training). I've recently purchased tools and have started touching the legs of all my cows routinely hoping to get them comfortable with and primed for a less-traumatic solution to trimming their hooves. I looked into buying the specialty squeeze chute made by http://comforthoofcare.com/ but they told me that because of the range of cow sizes I have, it wouldn't work.

Sam Steele, a horse farrier from St. Maries, Idaho arrived late in the day to discuss the idea with me. First, he went around lifting the feet on a few of my cows to see how they'd react. He agreed to try out a couple of my cows. I suggested Sally O'Mally and Miss Daisy because they're both in need of a trim but because they're in the later stages of their pregnancies, I would never put them on a tilt table. Sally did fine with her front feet. His friend in front held her head and talked to her constantly and finally reported, "Her breathing is getting normal again." He got her front hooves trimmed but she wouldn't let him work on her back legs so we brought her into my squeeze chute. He was able to get them trimmed there but it was a bit of a struggle (farrier's earn their $!!!).

Then, he quickly trimmed just one of Miss Daisy's hind feet that I try to keep trimmed in order to keep her leg from bowing (inside half of hoof grows much faster creating an uneven pad).

He seemed optimistic when he left. "We just need to get them comfortable with the idea. It'll take time, but Sally's second hind leg went much better than the first hind leg."

Anyway, what a saint. I loved the way he touched and comforted them and was constantly reasuring and loving with them.

I shot a couple of quick videos of him at work on Sally O'Mally.




MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~

Ron

4666 Posts
Ronnie
Peever SD
USA

Posted - Jun 03 2015 :  2:43:30 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Vetranrians and foot trimming people...must be heaven.

With a moo moo here and a moo moo there, here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo moo.
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NellieBelle

11074 Posts


Posted - Jun 03 2015 :  2:55:14 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That is fantastic MaryJane. Like you say it's probably in the early training. That would be so much better than the tilt table. I'll never do that again. But I don't think Nellie would stand for the farrier to trim either so...

To laugh is human but to moo is bovine. Author Unknown
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txbikergirl

3197 Posts


Posted - Jun 04 2015 :  6:07:41 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
fantastic! we have a farrier right down the road, as in if i road a bicycle it might take me 5 minutes ;> i will have to get him to do Sally's and the other cows hooves - i will show him the video. all reports around here are that he is a true horse whisperer, but i can only go on gut reaction when i see him in action...

Firefly Hollow Farm , our little farmstead. Farmgirl living in the green piney woods of East Texas on 23 acres with a few jerseys, too many chickens, a pair of pugs and my Texan hubby (aka "lover boy")
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Mike

1667 Posts
Mike
Argyle WI
United States of America

Posted - Jun 04 2015 :  7:24:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Have you had your little power gizmo in action yet? All I have heard and seen makes them out to be the greatest thing since squeaky cheese curds. Based on your opinion, I shall order one, or not. Let's see,
9 horses and 5 cows and about a hunnert piggies. Yes, the older boars do need hoof trims sometimes. We also have one gal Mangalitza who has one hoof that grows wild.

Keep watching Ginger Snap, maternity watch.
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maryjane

6942 Posts


Posted - Jun 06 2015 :  06:20:16 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mike, I did get my Electric Hoof Knife out for him to try on a piece of cedar (what they recommend). He seemed impressed but did say "Boy if you didn't know what you were doing, you could do a lot of damage with this." He's scheduled to come back on the 22nd with all the time in the world to slowly get all my girls used to the idea as best he can. And try out my new knife.

I predict the gals born here will be fine because I've made it a point to touch them a lot all over their bodies. I'm anxious to see how Sally does with the second round (fingers crossed she let's him work on her hind legs without having to be in the squeeze chute-- my goal for her) and also my big girl Fanci.

I won't have him even attempt a trim on my bulls. Between WSU and the Lewiston Vet Clinic, they both have safer set-ups for them and the guys don't seem to freak out as much on the tilt table.

I can't tell you how grateful and thankful I'll be if I can get routine trims (every 2 to 3 months) without having to haul everyone in sets of threes to the vet and back. And if Sally gets in the groove, it will make Cindy's life easier since she has a horse farrier right next door.

MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~
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txbikergirl

3197 Posts


Posted - Jun 06 2015 :  7:01:13 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
i think anyone that says something like, "it will make Cindy's life easier" is just a gem!

Firefly Hollow Farm , our little farmstead. Farmgirl living in the green piney woods of East Texas on 23 acres with a few jerseys, too many chickens, a pair of pugs and my Texan hubby (aka "lover boy")
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CloversMum

3486 Posts


Posted - Jun 23 2015 :  09:19:44 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
And, MaryJane, how did the visit with the horse farrier go yesterday?

I noticed today that Clover has a chip in one of her front hooves. Is it safe for a pregnant cow to be on a tilt table if I took her to WSU to get a hoof trim? Or is it safer to wait until after she gives birth? She doesn't seem to be affected by the chip; no pain, no limping or favoring.

Loving life and family on our Idaho farm, Meadowlark Heritage Farm; A few Jersey cows; a few alpacas; a few more goats, and even more ducks and chickens
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maryjane

6942 Posts


Posted - Jun 23 2015 :  11:06:11 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I posted about my farrier day on this thread: https://www.heritagejersey.org/chatroom/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=978&whichpage=2

I would wait until she delivers and then get her over the to tilt table.

MaryJane Butters, author of Milk Cow Kitchen ~ striving for the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain ~
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CloversMum

3486 Posts


Posted - Jun 23 2015 :  12:12:45 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Just saw your post on your farrier day. Thanks.

And, we'll wait for Clover's pedicure until the end of September.

Loving life and family on our Idaho farm, Meadowlark Heritage Farm; A few Jersey cows; a few alpacas; a few more goats, and even more ducks and chickens
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