December 3, 2012

The Friesians are Fitted for Winter Shoes

Did you know that a horse requires reshoeing every four to eight weeks?  A hoof grows in length just like a fingernail or toenail does.  And when the hoof grows, the shoe no longer fits correctly.  With five Friesians, Linda Friedman, a farrier, is a regular visitor at the farm.  The word, farrier, comes from the Latin, ferrum, meaning iron horseshoe.  Linda, who spent five years as an apprentice before starting out on her own, has been a farrier for more than twenty-five years and she is a master at trimming and shoeing horses’ hooves.  Linda has been at my stable recently fitting each horse with his winter shoes.  Shoeing is quite a complicated process, as each shoe is custom fitted onto each hoof.  And, considering that horses are so large and strong, there’s also a good deal of physical risk involved.  As with humans, bad fitting shoes can cause all kinds of physical problems.  Fitting horseshoes properly requires extensive knowledge of horse anatomy and Linda continues to educate herself by regularly attending clinics and symposiums.  Linda is proud of her work and really loves her job because she just loves being around horses.