Farrier fear help

lalabugs

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I have been working with one of the mustang's out at the rescue.
The goal is to get training on a pony sized mustang for my daughter to start working with him.
He is halter trained. My daughter and I can pick up all 4 feet to clean them with no issue. At first he yanked away. We have worked with him. He now stands.

The problem is we had the farrier out today. He was terrified of the farrier. Started snorting, would not walk up to the hitching post. Walking away from the farrier. We got his front feet trimmed. He would not allow us to touch his back feet. He went in full flight mode the second the farrier touched his back legs. We could not even touch his back legs, which is never an issue.

Since he has 0 issues with us touching his feet when the farrier is not around. How do we train him to not fear the farrier? I do not have farrier equipment to try to desensitize him.

Sending him to a trainer is out of the question. All the horses are older at the rescue. I contacted them about the horse I adopted. I was told they are to old to start training, they're set in their ways. No one will touch a horse older than 12 out here. My horse is 21. I was told hes unrteachable at his age. He was never saddle trained. My daughter and I can both ride him now. It took us time. But we got there.
 

messybun

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You can definitely teach an old dog new tricks, so to speak. Will he stand with other men? Is trimming them yourself an option?
 

lalabugs

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I am not sure if he will stand for other men. It's usually just my daughter and I out there. I can ask my husband and brother in law to come down to help.

I would prefer to have a farrier come out.
 

Kusanar

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Have random people come out and pick up his feet with you there. Work with him, desensitize and have him a little tired and then have random person come up and try to handle his feet. Maybe even a light calming suppliment might work to help take the edge off. I have used Vita Calm from tractor supply and its main active ingredient is tryptophan which is the substance that makes everyone want to take a nap after thanksgiving dinner. It doesnt drug them and make them not aware of their surroundings like a sedative would, but it just makes it take a lot more effort to spook. My spooky one will still spook at things on it, but where he would usually spook, then get all worked up and make me fly a 1,000 pound kite until he finally calms down, he spooks, bounces for maybe 3 steps, then head back down and back to sleep.

Have you tried trimming him? I understand you would prefer the farrier do it, but the sensation of the nippers and rasp are different from anything else he would have experienced so if you could trim him once while he is calm and not freaked out about a stranger touching his legs it may help a lot.
 

lalabugs

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I will try to get other people to come down to mess with his feet.
I will ask around to see if anyone I know has any old tools I could use to try to get him use to it. Thankfully his back feet are not bad.

Here's a picture of him with my daughter before he got trimmed.
Tried to post a video of her cleaning his feet, but it keeps saying the file is too large.



20201014_152622.jpg
 

Kusanar

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I will try to get other people to come down to mess with his feet.
I will ask around to see if anyone I know has any old tools I could use to try to get him use to it. Thankfully his back feet are not bad.

Here's a picture of him with my daughter before he got trimmed.
Tried to post a video of her cleaning his feet, but it keeps saying the file is too large.



View attachment 78812
You will have to upload the video to a video hosting site like youtube and then add it from there. You cant upload directly here I dont believe. Keep us posted on his progress and feel free to ask more questions.
 

secuono

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Haven't read the comments yet.

Are you two female and the farrier a male?

Does the farrier hot shoe as well?

What's the temperament of the farrier?

Is he/she rough, pulls feet too high or to the side?

My gelding didn't like any trimmers. I eventually found one that was willing to work with him, while I worked with him between trims. He didn't like being rushed, having his feet out too far to the front, back or to the sides, nor too high up. Trimmer came from out of state, so I started learning to do it myself.

So, try having the farrier leave something stinky from hot shoeing for horse to get used to. He/she should be willing to work with the horse in a calm & compromising manner. Pay the farrier more for their time, if they're willing to try helping you.
 

lalabugs

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Yes the farrier is male and we are female.
The farrier does hot shoe.

The farrier is an older gentleman who just wants to get it done. All the old cowboys out here use him.

He did not pull to high, slightly to the side.

If it comes down to learning how to trim, I will. But hopefully we can work with him, where he will be okay with the farrier.

I will keep the post updated.
 

promiseacres

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Definitely invest in a file. And then you can work him and desensitize him to one tool. And they are good to have around. I would guess it's someone new. So I agree have anyone who is willing come hang out and love on him. Feed him treats.
 

thistlebloom

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Male or female doesn't matter. That is an old myth. Horses read energy and intent and notice everything. We are not even close to being as observant as they are about body language. So what he needs is more time and patience.
Maybe a lot more time. And you can't gyp him there and get impatient for him to hurry up and trust. If his feet get long and ugly it won't be the end of the world, because sometimes the fastest way seems like the slowest way. But that time investment pays off for the rest of his life.

The farrier is an older gentleman who just wants to get it done. All the old cowboys out here use him.
And right there is your issue. You'll need to find a trimmer who is willing to go slow and be calm and patient with him.
I have a 5 YO mustang mare that I've had for a little over two years now. Her feet were horrible when I got her. The backs were extremely flared out to the side and long. I got her in July, and finally got to the point where I thought she would trust my trimmer enough to handle her feet at the end of the following October.
She was good for the first trim, relatively speaking, but not so good for many trims after. We found out that she had old scars from abscesses in all four feet, most likely from standing in muck at the holding facility after her capture. She had grown her feet out strangely, probably from not being able to walk without pain.
But now they are great feet. She will always have a straighter inside wall and a slight flare on the outside of her back feet, but we won't go for a cosmetic perfect looking hoof, because now her leg bones have grown to accomodate that. Thanks to my trimmer she is completely sound.

A horses feet are their escape mechanism and it takes a lot of trust for them to have someone hanging on to them. My trimmer is worth his weight in gold. The most patient man on the planet and willing to take whatever time necessary to make her trims a good experience.

I agree with having other experienced horse people come out and handle his feet. But keep your expectations low and praise a lot. If that means they pick them up two inches and set them back down, then that's what it takes. Don't however let your horse pull his foot away. Try to time it that you set them down gently before he feels the need to have it back. Timing is always critical in training. It's everything in fact.

I hope you have great success with him! I'm proud of you for searching for answers. They are worth the effort.
 
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