I can honestly say that I have never had a pedicure. I am not complaining, it is just something I have never done. I guess I am just a little weird about people touching my feet. Cow pedicures...now they are a regularly scheduled part of life around here.
Cows hooves are just like your fingernails. They grow. Some grow faster than others, some grow out nicely and some grow out funky. Most of the time just walking around the pastures and barn, the cows are able to keep the hooves worn down. Occasionally, they need a little help. That is when we call in our hoof trimmer, Joe Litt.
We are gearing up for the North American International livestock Exhibition next month and want to have all the show cattle in tip top shape. A good hoof trimmer can fine tune a cow and help to fix some walking issues that cows may be experiencing due to a wrong angle or too long hoof.
Joe watches the cows as they head for the chute to see what needs to be corrected. If they are toed out a little he can trim a little more off of the inside to help turn that foot in.
Mitchell gets loaded into the chute. He is then strapped in and secured.
The chute gets tilted on its side.
The floor of the chute opens allowing access to the hooves. Joe straps the feet in place to keep everyone safe. The cows don't always enjoy this process, but they are not being hurt at all. The chute is padded and every precaution is taken to keep the animal in the correct placement in the chute and out of harms way.
The mud and manure is scraped off of the hoof. Joe takes this opportunity to check for hoof rot and any other problems.
He pulls out the grinder and starts shaping the hoof.
This is a finished hoof.
The floor is closed back up, the chute is tilted and Mitchell is backed out of the chute. It is dark by the time we get everyone finished.
Here is Mitchell's pretty pedicure. It was dark, so the picture doesn't do it justice.
We are one step closer to Louisville.
Maybe after we get home I will schedule a pedicure for myself. I think I deserve it.
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Hello! I am Heather... the city girl turned mom to manure loving country boys. My husband and I both grew up in the city, but spent weekends visiting grandparents in the country. We are first generation farmers who learn best by almost always doing things the hard way. I hope you enjoy following along with our adventures down on the farm.