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I have a ‘soft red’ mare and my new farrier is a very good farrier but has a BIG presence, has lots of energy and is strict. My mare and I both get anxious. What would you do to help the horse in this situation?

Original Question

We have a new farrier which does an excellent trim, but has very strict rules about how the horse must behave for him. He also has a very BIG presence. Because of his rules, I get anxious that my soft red mare may get in trouble when she needs to move her feet. Normally, she’s very well-behaved for her trim, but because this guy has so much energy in his presence, and on top of that, I am anxious, my mare senses my anxiety and his energy and is quite fidgety. What would you do to help the horse in this situation?

Angie’s Answer


This is a good one Lisa, I know the feeling. We once had a farrier that was excellent with their feet, however all the young ‘red’ horses played up with him so he lost his temper with them which made it so much worse. It is a really hard conversation to have, I have had vets like this too. They don’t mean to but just don’t have awareness of their energy and how fast they move impacts super sensitive horses (especially ‘soft red horses’). I am not sure if you can talk to your farrier about it, but my guess is probably not.

I don’t even bring it up with vets etc. but what we can work on, is help desensitise our lovely, sensitive ‘soft red horses’ more to;

– Big energy
– Fast movements and
– Big movements

So over time big energy and fast movements don’t bother the ‘soft red’ horses as much. Obviously this takes time but it will also help your horse develop more confidence and trust in these types of things and also other people. I would suggest you watch more videos on desenstisation.

I have put a link in below to a video with Bobby the Brumby, with getting him used to jumping around and bigger movements. I would suggest you do lots more work along these lines with your horse. If you have a friend that is also following our program you could also have them do some work with your horse on the same exercises so your horse gets used to different people, especially different people with different energy.

Once you feel like you have prepared your horse more for these types of people (vets included) you may not get as anxious. I would also suggest doing a good groundwork session with your horse BEFORE the farrier turns up to help get both yourself and your horse in a more relaxed state of mind before he turns up, and focus on your slowing your breathing down.

Video with Bobby the Brumby, with getting him used to jumping around and bigger movements (soft red horse by nature, also a wild brumby)

Hope this helps



Angie Wicks

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