Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Trimming Goat Hooves

I noticed Clarisse's feet were getting a bit long the other day, so I set about to trim them. It's really not too hard to do, especially if you have the right equipment. I've tried the traditional type of hoof cutters, but for some reason they don't work that well for me. I have a pair of hoof nippers, the kind used on horses, and those are fabulous. I trim the sheep the same way.

Hooves in need of trimming. Note the edges curling under.
I tie Clarisse to the fence by her horns so she doesn't choke herself. I'll lean up against her and squish her to the fence while I pick up each foot to trim it. It's kind of hard for her to struggle against all that weight pressing into her. Usually I don't have to press too much because she knows the routine and will hold fairly quiet.

There are two parts to each hoof. I trim all the excess hoof growth off one side, then do the same to the other side.

Trimming one side of the hoof.

One side of the hoof is trimmed, the other is not.
It's fairly simple. First do one side of the hoof, then the other. Then move on to the next hoof.

The entire hoof is nicely trimmed.
Before you know it, all four hooves, all eight parts, are trimmed and pretty.

Pretty feet...

Then I let her go and give her a treat for being good.

Clarisse enjoying her treat.

When I was done with that chore I did a little weeding in the garden and came across this thing:

I didn't kill it because I didn't know if it was a good spider that eats bad bugs or not. Does anybody know? It's actual size is about 1 1/2". I don't like spiders to begin with and this one is especially creepy. It was under one of the tomatoes.



Gloria said...

The great thing about blogosphere is that I learn a new thing every(blog)day. This was the first time I've heard of trimming goat hooves and I was fascinated by your documentary. Thanks for sharing!

P.S: Silly question, but do the goat feel pain when you trim the hooves? Or are they just like human nails, dead?

tina f. said...

Hi Gloria,
It's just like trimming your fingernails. Unless you cut too low (into the quick) they don't feel it.
Glad you found me. Hope you enjoy!

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