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johnsculp
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Location: Ayrshire, Scotland

PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:14 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Hello all,

new to Shire horse ownership and riding. Thought I join this forum. Heres the first of a few questions I have.

About 6 weeks ago I was looking about for a horse when I came across a Shire. She looked lovely so I bought her, she is quiet, gentle, no trouble to me. She is a 9 year old Mare, called "Mira".
It was my intention to ride her but have since found out from Vet that she is in foal, due April. The former owner tells me she was running with Clydesdale colts.... so I am going to leave it a while and get to know her.

So we are getting on well, had her feet trimmed etc. I stable her at night, one night she reverses towards me whilst I am in there, I get slightly alarmed in the confined space. She pushes her butt up against the wall and starts scratching her behind on it, shaking the walls!. I move her forward and use a hard tail brush to scratch about her rear. Next night same thing happens. Been doing this a few nights now. A habit?

The tail looks really clean, I brushed it well, does not seem to be anything in it. I lift it up and brush underneath, seems clean there too.

Any thoughts???
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jack
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:22 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

all horses scratch mine use the gate which is now bent and the teligraph pole thats in the middle of the field
as long as there is no hair loss and the scratching isnt constant shouldnt be anything
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Lizzy
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:47 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Welcome to the world of itchy/scratchy Shires. As Jack said they love to scratch and will do manes, bellies, tails and hocks, sometimes doing damage to walls and posts and rubbing their manes out completely. You have the joys of feet biting and sweat itch to come - enjoy Laughing Wink
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jack
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:51 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

well its better than human men scratching there you know whats no matter where they are (oppps did i say that out loud)


Last edited by jack on Fri Dec 18, 2009 2:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Morph
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 2:02 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Yes, it's nornal - please don't be alarmed.

But as they're so HUUGE, then yes, they can easily knock things down - mine had the dubious honour of knocking down the field shelter (obviously wasn't built for a shire)

Aren't you lucky having two for the price of one!! What colour is Mira, do you have any pics, and what colour were the clydey colts she was runnning with?? Are you going to keep your new foal - how very exciting!!
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Morph
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 2:03 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Sweat itch Lizzy - that's a new one on me Laughing Laughing
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Tracey
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 2:58 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Hello John as the others have said it is all very normal. Very Happy

Ruby has found a good tall bush to rub her bum on at the moment, I am sure one day she will go through it Very Happy

Oh can't wait for some photo's. As Morph said you are lucky, two for the price of one Very Happy

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johnsculp
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 5:30 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

OK sounds like nothing to worry about, but will post another question on hair loss. Will look up how to load a pic.

John
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valerie n scout
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 7:11 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

hey think yourself lucky, our Dales Pony reverses into you so you can scratch his bum and his Willy Shocked
nice...
ps have seen your pics she is lovely ive posted there too xxx

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johnsculp
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 7:25 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Yes Morph, hope to keep the foal. Not sure about the colt father, but told it was a clyde. When I found out she was in foal I started looking into Mira ancestry and found a picture of her mother in foal and her half sister, both now living in Sweden! Looking forward to the foal.

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Moorfield Callum
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 20, 2009 5:02 am Reply with quoteBack to top

My boy does this too, but he poos up the wall too!!!!

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Carolus Magnus
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:29 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Look forward to hear about your foal.... its going to be a fabulous baby - I have a Clydesdale X cob, I have nothing to say but praise about Clydesdales - mine has the most wonderful temperment - so gentle and kind - a real sweetheart.

I am please to know others have beasties with itchy bums - so far my lad has knocked over a wooden stable, a breeze block wall ,the water drinker off the stable wall....and all the field fence posts lean at angles!

I bought some cheap (2) open mesh rubber mats from Wilkos that have prominent rubber spikes on the underside and fixed them round his stable so he's got a safe, non-abrasive but satisfying rough surface to rub against and he doesn't have to lean on them heavily to have a good itch. Wilkos also stockly have green spiky plastic mats which are excellent for attaching to favourite itching posts/spots out in the paddock...out of stock at the moment but they're on my shopping list for Spring Laughing

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Lizzy
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 8:19 am Reply with quoteBack to top

If you look at the ecstatic expression on their faces when they are scratching their arses, it seems a shame to stop them. Laughing If you must though, oil and sulphur helps and it forms a bit of a barrier.

Ours back into you to have their backsides and inside of their back legs scratched. Can be a bit unnerving if you are standing in a field with 6 huge rear ends shoving you. Shocked
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Ossie
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 8:47 am Reply with quoteBack to top

George can turn on a penny if he thinks he will get a bum scratch!! Laughing Rosie doesn't seem to be afflicted too much with the itchy backside syndrome, but then she is young ... I'm sure it will come with time!!
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Count Jackula
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 9:06 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Jack doesn't scratch his butt anywhere near as much as he did when he came, still but he makes me laugh the way he tries to reverse stealthily towards the wheelbarrow - ahem, mate, you're over 18 hands and black, momma may just spot you, even on tippy toe - and we have lost a drinker off the wall and he's even been known to sit in his manger, sheer ecstasy on his face as he sways! Laughing Rolling Eyes
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johnsculp
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 9:43 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Since first post on this itchy tail/bum its become a part of the evening routine. When I go to leave her stable, Mira will spin round and reverse her bum towards me - she has me well trained now to scratch her tail, she lifts it to the right, then when done on that side, lifts it to the left. If I really hit the spot her whole back end sways and chin wobbles away. I am sure to an observer it looks quite odd. I have got over the initial alarm I first felt when I saw the back end swing round so promptly. Her previous owner must have obliged her in this way and she expected no less from me!javascript:emoticon('Exclamation')

The tail/rear end is clean, no sign of anything live, she is not doing it to the extent of loosing any hair - but it must be something that makes the area so itchy and such a regular place to need scratching. Or is it a friendship habit?javascript:emoticon('Confused')

Getting on well with her, she is well behaved and has settled in well with my wife & daughters' ponies. She will come to me across our fields if I whistle at her, which I like.

On most days she is the herd leader, 'Queen of the Paddock' but sometimes she concedes it to the Shetland Mare javascript:emoticon('Shocked')
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Lizzy
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 9:45 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Oh yes that naughty trick of getting one leg over the wheelbarrow handle so that they can scratch the inside of their hocks Embarassed . Many a full muck barrow has been tipped over with that little manoeuvre, it seems their mission in life is to outwit us mere mortals. Laughing Laughing
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Lizzy
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 9:48 am Reply with quoteBack to top

John you speak so lovingly about your new girl and it really is nice to read your stories about her. Ours do that chin wobbling bit and the grey gelding sticks his top lip out and shows his teeth when he is having a fuss. Mind you if I don't get the spot right they are not amused and I am told in no uncertain terms. Shocked Laughing Wonderful aren't they?
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Clipclop
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:17 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Mabel had this, the vet diagnosed worm activity in her anus and gave an worming enema type treatment (as well as orally). Fine since.

If it is worms, that's what happens when they become resistant to worming preparations and regimes I think. Best not to use the same one each time but change about. Some types are more suited to certain times of year.

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johnsculp
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2011 7:38 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Hello Clipclop,
I started this post just after I got my Shire mare approx 2 years ago now and noe I think we know each other quite well, I enjoy the keeping of a horse even though not enough riding is done with her.

We do treat our x4 horses with various wormers, as you say to stop the resistance build u, but I imagine there is always some worm activity.

In the time I have shared with Mira she has shown me all the bits of her that she wants scratching and it is part of our regular grooming routine to start with a good scratch of her favourite places. A flick of the tail and twich of ears is the stop sign. It used to be slightly alarming when she swung her 850 kg mass arond to position herself backend for scratching, now its the set pattern. I tend to not rug unless it becomes really bad weather and consequently she & her daughter get pretty hairy, which in itself brings on itchy scratching needs.
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Clipclop
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2011 8:30 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Ah yes, this all sounds completely normal and as if you have a really good relationship. Congratulations on the bond you have with your lovely horse.
Keep scratchin' !

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A horse can lend its rider the speed and strength he or she lacks, but the rider who is wise remembers it is no more than a loan. ~Pam Brown
If the world was truly a rational place, men would ride sidesaddle. ~Rita Mae Brown
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