Please remember!

The information presented on this blog represents "learning in progress" on my part, a horse owner, who was not satisfied with professional farriers and took matters in my own hands. As far as I am aware at the time of the post, the information presented is correct, but may change with me understanding more about hooves, in which case I will edit or remove the post. In order to follow my learning and understand everything about Molly's hoof, you need to start reading at the bottom.

Monday, February 3, 2014

snow, snow, and then some more snow...

It seems as if this year we just don't get a break from the snow. I have not seen earth in over 2 months now, only snow. It is an interesting cycle. Either it is "warm", around 0 to -5 degree C, and then it snows, or it is freezing cold (lower than -19 C) and the sun is bright up and the skies are blue. All creatures on my little farm have by now gotten used to it, even I have become very proficient in snow shuffling. I have to add an extra 30 minutes each day, to heat up my water pump in the barn, and mostly to dig my path to the manure pile and also from the barn to the house.

The only thing I am missing is studying hoof pictures. And hooves for that matter. I cannot see my horses hooves in the snow. When I try to pick them up, the snow is stuck in them and is all around them. Cleaning them out is a task too, as I am very clumsy with my big winter gloves, and by the time I have taken off the glove I have dropped the hoof pick and have to search for it in the snow. It is not fun, and so I have pretty much just given up doing anything with the feet. 3 days ago, I did a thorough check and everything looked great. Hardly anything to do. Horses grow thick soles in the snow and that is a good thing. Also, they get quite a lot of exercise. It is really exhausting to walk all day in the deep snow.

The horses love the cold days with the bright sun out. Molly, in her black fur, positions herself in parallel to the sun. Within seconds, the black fur gets hot and I see steam coming off from the skin underneath it. She just loves "baking" in the sun on days like this, especially after the cold night. Gus, with his lighter hair does not get nearly as hot. But he too must feel the warmth of the sun. At least he is at an advantage in the summer, where he does not get as hot and attracts way less horse flies than Molly's black coat does. But I do think in the cold winter, the black coat must be an advantage. Also, since yesterday, Molly starts dropping some hair! It always amazes me, how much in advance they anticipate the change in season. On the hottest days in August, they start growing in their winter fur and at the coldest days at the end of January, they start dropping them.

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