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Monday, August 2, 2010

Happy Tevis to me.....

Side note: I'm extremely touched by all the support I got before, during, and after Tevis in the form of e-mails, text messages, and voice messages wishing me luck and offering congratulations. I also appreciate the e-mails from those of you led to offer me advice on my equipment and ride etc. It has gotten to the point where it's impossible for me to reply to every response - work is out of control and I'm still physically recovering from the ride (which is taking a long time because of work demands). Please don't be offended if you don't recieve a reply, and if you have a question for me that hasn't gotten a response, e-mail it to me again in a couple of weeks. THANK YOU EVERYONE. It meant a lot to me to have so many people wishing me well down the trail and it made a HUGE difference in my ride.

Happy Tevis to me…..happy Tevis to me!.....HAAAAPPPPPPYYYYYY TEVIS TO MELINDA…….happy Tevis to me! (sang to the tune of “Happy birthday”).

Really – how long can I draw this Tevis thing out? I’ve already decided I must stop randomly inserting it into conversations. “Last weekend I finished the Tevis” seems acceptable while “2 weeks ago I finished…” does not.

I have a whole post on how it feels to finish Tevis that I probably won’t post, but one thing I do want to mention is that out of all the personal goals I have achieved in my very short lifetime, Tevis is the only one that hasn’t had a “let down” of some sort. I’m more excited NOW about finishing than I was prior to, or during the race. I’m so excited about next year I can barely breathe and I have the attention span of a gnat in all non-tevis topics.

In the name of Tevis, redgirl and I managed to finish off an entire bottle of tonic, and nearly matched that in gin on Friday night.

I’ve fantasized all week about changing my veterinary study program from commercial food animal, to a program that will allow me to do research on the horse hoof and everything related from physics, movement, nutrition, modification, barefoot, boots and the like.

And now I’ve done it again – justified buying myself a present - new farrier tools - in the name of celebrating Tevis.

It started with a new “hoop” hoof knife. I saw Kirt use one to trim Farley’s bars after Tevis and immediately fell in LOVE with it. Got to have one.

Then I found out that all this time I was using a lefty hoof knife. The feedstore a year ago accidentally sold me a lefty and me, being a complete newbie didn’t know the difference. My friend and I were evaluating the feet of her two year old and she mentioned that I used the hoof knife in a very weird way. Sure enough, when I went into the feedstore today and looked at knives, I’ve been using a lefty and developed a style that allowed me to use it in my right hand. So…..add a righty knife to that shopping cart.

I trimmed Farley’s feet yesterday and after watching the sweat from my forehead pool on the ground underneath me, decided I needed a new rasp…..The feedstore was out of Save Edges, so I added a Diamond rasp to the pile.

$120 poorer I leave the feedstore. I’ve learned that I have no tolerance for poor quality farrier tools, especially being of the “weaker” sex. The horse’s foot is going to be a subject of life-long fascination for me and every vet should have a set of quality hoof tools right????????

Go ahead – tell me I’m crazy but I probably won’t hear you. I’m too busy looking at my pretty knives and dreaming of next year’s July full moon.


  1. I totally hear you on the quality tools thing. I started with cheap tools, and have been buying the best I can ever since, the cheap ones being so frustrating... I love the Save Edge rasps. I have a Diamond hoof knife and I am not a huge fan, but it works okay. Feet are so fascinating! I wish I had the time and money to get involved in all the research that's going on!

  2. I love the loop knives! Again, thank you, Kirt. I never quite trusted myself with the combination of hoof knife + fingers + potentially squirmy horse. The loop knife minimizes that to some degree, at least.

    It's amazing how much easier hoof trimming is with good-quality tools. Especially a nice sharp rasp.

  3. A couple of guides recommend that you have one of each knife -use one on one side of the horse, then the other on the other. (What a terrible sentence. I rite gud.)

    I have an awesome knife sharpening kit now, and I should probably buy a knife again. I need a new rasp, too... rock hard hooves are beautiful to look at and ride on, but they're no fun to trim :(

  4. Honestly, keep the Tevis posts coming. I LOVE THEM! :D

  5. Any of you ladies know of a brand of hoof nippers that actually fit a small woman's hand?


  6. I remember hearing somewhere that some people have luck with compound bonsai shears.

  7. Sorry - can't help you out there. I don't use hoof nippers, only a rasp and a knife. I do carry one around to lop off the heels of my boots, but it's a piece of *crap* and I wouldn't use it on hooves... :)

  8. I'm one of the ones who uses bonsai nippers! They're a great option for trimming down bits of the bars. Not really strong enough for trimming the rest of the hoof, though...would probably wear them out very quickly.

  9. I love the last sentence of your post and am gleefully taking it out of context


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