When I last updated on Robert-doings, we were cruising around the arena all by ourselves in the cart. Okay, so we only walked, but we walked with no header and no tantrums. My horse is kind of a big deal. I decided to follow that up by heading up the road the next day to the local state park and explore their horse trails. Hubby wanted to take the canoe out on the lake, so Bobby and I hitched a ride.
I can tell you right now that whoever designated the equestrian trails at this park has clearly never seen a horse before. Not that it was impossible to ride, but it was a two mile uphill climb that was almost solid rock. Not ideal pony prancing circumstances. It was, however, apparently excellent training circumstances as I met three women almost to the summit (like we were scaling Mt Kilimanjaro or something). Two of them were in the Army, and the other one was doing reps up this particular trail to get in shape for climbing Mt Everest. I mean, really.
I ended up leading Bobby up the last part of the trail and I had to lead him all the way down. Bobby was a perfect gentleman the entire time, despite being by himself somewhere he'd never been before. He plodded along at the end of the reins behind me unless we were going down a seriously steep section. Then he was able to slide down faster, but once he got his footing secure again, he stopped and waited for me to catch up on his own. No screaming, no trying to get back to the trailer, just accepting his poor pony fate.
|at the top of the trail.|
All of that leads to Wednesday's farrier appointment. Warning: there will be copious amounts of swearing.
NF has been harping to me for months about how if he has to keep nailing missing shoes into Bobby's feet that the hoof is going to be useless and it's never going to be salvageable and so on and so on. I can't afford glue-ons so that's never been an option. However, pulling his shoes and letting his hoof grow out to something semi-respectable has been. I've just been pushing it off to keep competing. Well, competing got kicked to the curb awhile ago and now that my foot is broken, riding has temporarily been kicked to the curb.
So I told NF that instead of putting the pulled shoe back onto a hoof that was torn to shreds, I wanted to pull all of his shoes. NF said no. NF said that his hind feet aren't really that bad and that he refuses to pull his front shoes. NF said Bobby was going to be dead lame if we pulled them and he might never truly be sound barefoot. So NF put his hind shoe back on.
Ok, let's break this down really quick before I continue with the story.
Here's the RH that got the shoe put back on:
|looks like a hoof i'd want to keep sticking nails in!|
And as far as being completely sound barefoot--that's not my goal either. I would like him to grow a healthy enough foot so that he can hold a shoe for more than three weeks next year and I don't have to scratch shows because he got a loose shoe tacked back on the day before competition and he's sore.
Needless to say, I was really pissed. I waited for BM to arrive because NF also said that our turnout plan is not acceptable and I was ready to cry and then punch someone out at that point. I told BM that NF wanted to change the turnout again and BM went stomping over to NF to ask WTF he wanted her to do. I was really happy to have BM on my side. I wouldn't want her yelling at me.
BM: What do you want me to do with this horse, NF?!
NF: Do you want me to tell you what my first preferred option would be? I would pull all his shoes and keep him in his stall 24/7.
At which point I almost walked away.
WTF DID I JUST ASK YOU TO DO?!?! WHAT DID NOT GET ACROSS IN THAT HOUR LONG CONVERSATION???
In another circuitous conversation, BM and I agreed that Bobby could live in the big (like 12'x60') pen off the back of the indoor. There's a tiny little paddock off the back of it that he can get locked out of when it's raining, and he can get turned loose in the indoor at night. BM was even going to try to come up with a buddy he could get turned out with at night. That way he could go from a foot of shavings to a foot of arena footing without ever coming in contact with hard ground until his feet toughen up. Great plan, yes?
I repeated for the hundredth time to NF that Bobby could have as much time off as he needed and he was going to live in the arena so he wouldn't be walking on stone. So what did NF do?
With my horse's shoes still on.
Granted, he's supposed to be coming back today to finish up the rest of his horses, but what are the chances Bobby's shoes will actually be off? I'm going to say zero. And then I'm just going to pull them off myself. Bobby is going to be barefoot. Period.