I did my first bodyclip of the year today. Normally I would wait and clip in a few more weeks. However we've been in the low 80's almost every day for the last three weeks so I decided to go ahead and clip. Now that I've started we can almost count on having a cold front come park itself over middle Tennessee for awhile. When it happens you can blame me.
Lily was up for clipping today. I can only describe it as an epic clipping job. It took a long time and two sets of new blades to relieve Lily of her hair. I started Lily's day off with a bath. She hates having a bath, and she let me know today that her feelings have not changed. We got through it and I soaped and scrubbed and rinsed with enthusiasm. Nothing dulls clipper blades faster than a dirty horse so I scrubbed and curried for awhile.
I prefer to clip a wet horse so as soon as we were done with the bath and had a few minutes of drip drying while hand grazing we got down to business with the clippers. Normally I body clip Lily a few weeks later than this when she's shed out a lot of her coat. I'm glad I had two new sets of blades as I needed both of them to get through the mounds of hair.
When I was about a third of the way through the first side I realized I needed to give up on the idea of the perfect, smooth, can't tell the horse was actually clipped look and focus on getting the hair off. I have two pairs of body clippers, both Andis Progress clippers, and I love them. I can't imagine what my wrists and arms would feel like right now if I'd had to hold up a pair of Oster Clipmasters for a few hours today.
After being cranky and disagreeable for the first few minutes of clipping Lily quickly settled into the groove and stood quietly the whole time. I'm sure it felt good to get rid of the yak coat on a sunny, warm day. When Jason came in the barn to observe the finished product his comment was Lily looked like she had lost 150 pounds. Instead of looking overweight her weight now looks perfect. She had that much hair!!
Without further ado here are the transformation pictures of Lily:
the first stroke
a before picture taken this morning
neck and barrel done on the first side; note the happy licking and chewing from Lily
neck and shoulder done on the other side
starting to dehair the legs; the hair was so thick on the floor it covered her hooves
Lily and I showing off the finished product; her pretty head and neck were hiding under the yak coat. You can't really tell in this picture but I had on my t-shirt with the fainted fainting goat, it's my new favorite t-shirt.
Lily's thanks for all of my work was to tear out at 100 miles per hour when I put her back out
Miss Lyle the fainting goat (the one who, according to Jason, dances to Lady Gaga) checking out a cow trough
the view from the trough was interesting
I hate that this picture of Miss Lyle exiting the trough turned out so blurry; I think you can get the idea of what happened anyway. Look at the air and the hang time!
Thor, Fabrizzio, Noble, Lightening and Slinky on the move
Silky and Calimba
Lightening, Snappy and O'Reilly
Norman and Traveller
Fonzi leading the gang through the pasture; Romeo, Gus and Winston are behind him