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June 1, 2019


someone with a beter atitude, then it’s all good.”


Avoiding Therapeutic Cases To limit the number of thera-


peutic cases he has in his book, Koons takes control of the hors- es’ feet. “I want to work with people


who know and respect that I’m the hoof expert, not the vet,” he says. “That’s something I try to show them, rather than tell them. My goal as their farrier is to make it to where they don’t ever have to think about their horses’ feet.” Koons accomplishes this by


maintaining their hoof-care schedules, rather than the client calling him when they are due. “I figure out when the horses


need to be done,” he says. “I like 6- or 7-week cycles, depending on the individual horse. They don’t have to think about when they’re due. They don’t have to think about the wall chipping or breaking. They don’t have to look at hooves that aren’t right. “A facility like this is great,


because I have some horses at 6 weeks, some at 7, some at 8. Emalee is looking aſter about 60-head of horses, so if she has to think about everything else these horses need and their feet, it’s going to get overwhelming.” Taking on a new client can be


taxing initially. “I’m used to doing things my


way and being in charge of the feet and shoeing,” says Koons, who’s been shoeing for nearly 30 years. “They’re used to micro- managing every litle aspect of their horse. They think they like that, but once they get used


to leting go of the reins, they realize that I’m going to show up and I’m going to take care of the horse before it becomes an issue.” It usually takes two or three


shoeing cycles before his new client realizes they have nothing to worry about. “I can’t tell you how many people tell me that their horses need to be done a minimum of 4 or 5 weeks because they’re show horses,” he says. “I explain my theories and that I like to have more foot. If they can go 6 weeks, I prefer that.” If the potential client resists


his 6-week schedule, Koons agrees to a compromise. “I tell them, ‘OK, go ahead and


write me down in your book and call me when you think they need to be done,’” he says. “I had one client text me at 6 weeks and ask whether it’s been 5 weeks yet. I told her no, we’re actually in the sixth week. ‘Are you kidding me? I’m not used to my shoes being tight and the feet not growing over the shoes.’”


A Typical Case Aſter opening up his


Stonewell trailer and seting up, a groom brings Max to the shoeing area. Koons asks the groom to stick around and hold the big bay rather than use the cross-ties.


“The last time I shod this


horse, it was scary,” he says, noting this is only the second time he has shod this horse. “I was worried about him feeling the nailing because his hoof was in such poor condition. It


See FARRIER, page 26


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Koons found significant hoof wall separation after pulling Bijou’s shoe. After trimming about three-quarters of the hoof wall, the separation wasn’t as serious.


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