Old Hands

Sleddale Rose Beauty, 25 years young

It’s such a pleasure to trim Sleddale Rose Beauty’s hooves.  After twenty-five years of life, this Fell Pony mare is an old hand at the chore, which makes my life as the trimmer so much easier.

Of course, I haven’t always felt this way.  I remember the first time I trimmed Beauty’s hooves twelve years ago.  It was a rude awakening to the meaning of ‘characteristic blue horn’ from the Fell Pony breed description.  I appreciate good hard hooves from a using perspective, but for someone like me lacking in the upper-body-strength department, hard hooves can be challenging to trim.  And then there is the ample circumference of a Sleddale hoof, too.

Now, of course, I know to choose the day for trimming wisely.  I wait for plenty of ground humidity to soften that blue horn.  And now Beauty and I are both old hands at the chore.  I appreciate how quietly she stands and how willingly she offers her foot when asked.  And she appreciates the treat that is offered when a foot is done.  What a blessing it has been to share these twelve years with Beauty.

© Jenifer Morrissey, 2012

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About workponies

Breeder of Fell Ponies, teamster of work ponies, and author of Feather Notes, Fell Pony News, and A Humbling Experience: My First Few Years with Fell Ponies. Distributor of Dynamite Specialty Products for the health of our planet and the beings I share it with.
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