Hooves Matter

Avantos, with Russ & his “Bear”

Friday, September 03, 2021 —(On September 20, the full moon, “Harvest”, will rise nearest to earth.)

It was thrilling to meet two world-class horses, both rescues, and now living with loving riders.

My farrier, Russ, comes to town regularly to work on some 20-25 horses. We who are accustomed to his work consider it the best. Russ was scheduled to trim and shoe a couple of horses nearby. I went to watch and meet them.

Ashley’s adoptee, a Dutch Warmblood named Avantos, is a 17-year-old, internationally-recognized champion jumper. Two or three years ago, Ashley learned he was available from a top jumper-trainer. Avantos’s hooves were in very poor condition for various reasons. The horse barely could walk, much less jump.

On learning that Aventos was being retired, needing a new home, Ashley asked Russ to evaluate if he could correct the hooves enough to make Aventos again rideable, at least on trails. Russ said yes and has done so. This summer, in a first Ashley and Avantos entered Bend’s High Desert Jumping Classic. The horse jumped effortlessly and placed high!

Russ, while working my horses, has told me about repairs to Avantos’s hoofs, and how Ashley has begun working with a jumping trainer. I went to meet this horse, he’s drop-dead gorgeous–tall at something like 16+ hands, has a body lean and fit, and gorgeous long legs. Even my novice quick glance could identify that born jumper.

Russ’s knowledge and efforts are maintaining Aventos’s hooves. Ashley explained that it’s all-day work to shoe Aventos. That’s anyway how Russ works, he’s careful and determined to achieve desired results. Ashley is thrilled and again is entered to compete with Avantos, in an upcoming California show.

My phone couldn’t capture a good-enough whole body of Avantos, but here’s a nice image.

In that barn, I met Chiver, another world-famous rescued athlete, a 22-year-old dressage/jumper belonging to Ashley’s friend, Kelly. Chiver had developed a small cloud in one eye that hindered his ability to assess jumps and needed a new home. Kelly has been as thrilled with Chiver as Ashley with Avantos. Together they are redeveloping these horses, and Russ is their hoof expert.

Chiver is another giant at 16+ hands. He’s muscular and stocky, and a breed new to me–a Belgian Warmblood Sport Horse, called a Zangersheid. His full name is ChevisZ to identify his bloodline. His hooves seen about the size of dinner-plates.

When I met Chiver, he was being harnessed. Kelly was going to work him in dressage. I tagged along to see this magnificent-looking horse in action.

And wasn’t disappointed. The big guy seemed light as a feather, like poetry in motion.

I understand the excitement of renewing a horse’s athleticism, and simultaneously, discovering in oneself an ongoing eagerness to work better with and learn from a horse. This excitement of such two-way learning experiences is knitted into my years with Sunni and Rosie.

It’s a joy, meeting like-minded horse-folks who’ve found opportunities to interact seriously with proven world-class animals. These adopters understand that re-developing a horse’s natural abilities also enhances their own skill levels.

Dear Friends: We made a down-to-earth plan, to team-up soon and go trail-riding in the forest. Diana

One thought on “Hooves Matter

  1. I loved your blog this morning and fun to see Russ, Bear, Ashley and Kelly and their horses. You’re making some good new connections with horse people. 😄

    Sent from my iPhone

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