Fifteen hooves done, five to go. I was so pleased yesterday because the girls hardly fought having the last back hoof trimmed. I think I may have helped the procedure by hiding the shears until the last minute before picking up the foot. I hate to be sneaky with the girls, but hey, whatever it takes to keep them and me safe. All that's left to do today is their left forefoot, the easiest by far. Trimming the right forefoot is an exercise in gymnastics because I'm nearly standing on my head and the shears have to be held in my left hand (I'm not left-handed). Explaining anything to the goats is like teaching a pig to sing, but I've told them how much better they'll feel after the job is done. The hoof walls fold under as they grow and it must be like walking with rocks in their socks. With even three out of four feet trimmed, they are tripping the light fantastic in the field now.
I tried one more time without success yesterday to get John Dear's cooperation. Nothing for it but to take a big gulp of pride and ask Beau for help. Bless his heart, he came over shortly after receiving my text (I wasn't brave enough to actually call). I had the trickle charger and extension cord at the ready, but he got on the tractor, fiddled with this and that, and that booger John roared to life! It must be a guy-to-guy thing. Just as I hadn't pressed hard enough on the brake pedal to get the key to turn, I hadn't pushed the throttle lever past the "click" point to get the engine to turn over. As glad as I was (am) that it was something so simple, I really wanted to slap John's face for putting me through such embarrassment. I'm also pretty upset with the instruction manual for not mentioning these fine points of operation. Beau was very compassionate and did not further my humiliation, and said he would come any time I needed help. Bless his heart.
Later, long after Beau was out of earshot, I went out to practice with John. Satisfied with himself and his shenanigans, he cooperated fully and we tootled around, going faster and slower, backing up, and did a trial run with the blades down in the center of the driveway. By that time, the wind had come up and the weeds were drier and I didn't want to take a chance on a stray spark starting a fire by doing a real mowing. It was enough to know I could get John to run.
It was a good day.