|Need to get Fox Trot back!
Wyoming 4 year old Fox Trotter, ridden in a pasture. Hackamore and western saddle, intermediate rider.
Question: This horse came with a really good gait -- fast and smooth.
The first time I had him reshod, he started to pace a little. The next
time, he started to pace a lot -- and now all he wants to do is pace.
How do I get that fox trot back?
From Panelists Laura
From your description (the horse is getting pacier with each reshoeing),
it sounds like your farrier may be doing what they call a 4-point or "natural"
trim/shoeing on your horse. This type of shoeing is very popular
with the farriers in this region (Colorado, Wyoming, Montana). A
4-point trim usually involves cutting the foot very short, setting the
shoe back behind the toe and then "dubbing off" or rasping away the toe
to meet the set back shoe. If your horse's feet look very small,
short and squared off in the front, this
If this is the case, tap your farrier sharply on the head with the nearest heavy object (just kidding) and tell him to NOT set the shoes back. A pacy horse needs more toe and more hoof length than most trotty type horses. Tell your farrier that that the 4-point does not work well on gaited horses and actually can cause them discomfort.
If your farrier is doing a regular shoeing job (not dubbing the toe and setting back the shoes), then you may need to work the horse in a bit rather than a hackamore. It can be difficult to collect a horse in a mechanical hackamore (you don't normally use much contact with a hackamore) and your horse may need to raise his head and round his back more to gait better.
From Panelists Nancy
I'm going to tell you what I would do if I had that horse for training.
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