Earlier this summer we started working with a new ferrier named Marvin, and he’s great! Not only is Marvin a fantastic ferrier, but fun fact – he is amish. On his first visit, Marvin arrived at 7am sharp and stayed with us until noon trimming hooves. In total, I think that he trimmed 20 horse’s hooves that day – holy cow! I attempted to file a horse’s hooves once and I was sweating after the first hoof – so I can’t even imagine the stamina it takes to do the hooves of 20 horses.
I snapped the photo above while Marvin was hard at work – and I hope that he’s not annoyed that I took a photo of him (don’t worry Marvin, I can take it down if need be!). Who am I kidding, he is never going to read this. Anyway, I thought that it was an awesome photo of him hard at work and couldn’t wait to share.
The photo also inspired me to do a little bit of research into Horseshoeing and the tools that Ferriers use. The first one is called the Nipper and it is basically like a gigantic nail clipper. You can’t see it that well, but Marvin has it in his hands in the photo above. The second basic tool is the File and it is basically a large nail file – but much larger, it’s about the size of my forearm. In the photo above, Marvin also has his Anvil Stand out and ready to shape horseshoes if need be (and he did end up using it later that day to fit horseshoes to two of our guys).
What I found most impressive about Marvin was his attitude and demeanor towards the horses. Working with horses is frustrating, but not once did he loose his cool. If the horse that he was working on dropped their hoof mid trim, Marvin would simply wait a second and pick the hoof back up – and no matter how many times he had to pick the hoof back up, he never lost his patience. Basically, he was cool as ice.
cool stuff, huh? xoxo SLo
For the past couple of weeks I’ve started running in the mornings (well more like jogging with a whole bunch of stretching… but whose keeping track?) And although I thought that it would be awful to get up that early – I’ve really been enjoying it.
First of all, the fact that I’m getting up early to exercise makes me feel pretty darn accomplished. Second of all, the farm always looks prettier in the quiet of the morning and as the sun is climbing in the sky. Take for example the photo above that I took last week on a particularly foggy morning.
But most of all, what I’ve realized is that taking the time to exercise in the morning helps me to shed a better perspective on the rest of the day. It also puts me in a much better mood when I finally get to breakfast, and I’m not in such a hurry to get my morning cup of coffee – who knew! The only down side? my alarm is already set for 6:45am tomorrow morning.
* Warning, do not read on if you are squeamish, or don’t like blood/ wounds.
About two weeks ago, one of our horses came in from the paddock with a six inch gash on his flank. The cut was large, open and pretty nasty – if I do say so myself. The vet came out later that day to assess the situation, and ended up suturing Willy up leaving his would looking like this:
Pretty sick, right? (That’s how it looked right after the sutures, and has been healing nicely since)
Watching the vet sew together Willy’s flank was hands down one of the coolest medical procedures I’ve witnessed first hand. He used tubing to hold together the flank and sutures, and to make it harder for them to fall out. Dr. Rick also inserted a tube to allow for drainage.
You might be thinking, “what’s that yellow stuff” in the photo?” well, it’s Nitrafurazone – which is an anti-bacterial ointment for animals (cats, dogs and horses). And the red stuff, well that’s blood. When I showed the photo to my brother he said that it looked like pasta, and I’ve had a hard time getting that visual out of my head since.
Since then, we’ve been cleaning the sutures and wound multiple times a day, applying nitrafurazone and keeping Willy as comfortable as can be until he heals fully! It’s times like these when I think that I should go into medicine, but then I remember how much more time I would have to spend in the class room – and I think eeh not right now.