Club foot & toe/frog dimensions - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 02-28-2012, 08:42 PM Thread Starter
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Club foot & toe/frog dimensions

I know with a normal hoof, the "halfway" mark is from about an inch behind the apex of the frog to the toe. Anything longer than that would suggest a long or flared toe.

What about a club foot? I have been taking weekly pics of my horse's club foot since pulling his shoes. I was expecting to see the heels de-contract and the hoof begin to take on a more round shape. Instead I'm seeing a hoof that is becoming more oval and elongated. The heel is actually coming further back, while the toe length is getting longer. The weird thing is, from looking at it from a side view, it would not be evident that is happening under there. The toe does not appear to be flared, the hoof still looks very much upright, and the toe callous is right at the edge of the toe.

My question is, do you encourage a known abnormal foot to take on a normal shape? Is it normal for a club foot to assume a more oval shape? It all seems to be working just fine for him, so I don't want to force something that might never happen when it's working just fine for now.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #2 of 17 Old 02-28-2012, 09:36 PM
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I'm assuming this is on the front. Regardless, You have to get them to use that foot that's clubbed. Then when they put equal weight on it, it'll get equally wide and round

Shod or barefoot doesn't matter, just get him to use the weak side

Last edited by AmazinCaucasian; 02-28-2012 at 09:38 PM.
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post #3 of 17 Old 02-28-2012, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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Oh he's using it. He's grazing with both legs even instead of the low foot in front and his trot is improving each day as he finds his new center of balance. The foot is reshaping itself, just not in the way I expected.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #4 of 17 Old 02-28-2012, 10:36 PM
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If he's using it, why is it clubbed? Was it an injury that made him unsound, and is healed now?

So it was clubbed and now isn't? Does he lope equally in both directions?
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post #5 of 17 Old 02-28-2012, 10:50 PM Thread Starter
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He's a classic high/low TB. Grazing foot situation. He's pretty darn balanced considering one foot is a good 1/2 inch larger in circumference than the other. It's barely a club foot, but does fit the definition. The trimmer brought the high one down a bit 4 weeks ago, and the sole is now starting to shed a bit more indicating it wants to come down some more. I'm just confused about the shape it seems to want to take.

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post #6 of 17 Old 02-28-2012, 11:33 PM
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Cutting the heel down doesn't fix a club foot. You can cut those heels down for 5 years and the foot will still be 1/2 inch narrower.

Cutting the heels aligns the bones, but it's the reason the hoof looks longer

Last edited by AmazinCaucasian; 02-28-2012 at 11:36 PM.
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post #7 of 17 Old 02-29-2012, 12:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyBoyPuck View Post
I was expecting to see the heels de-contract and the hoof begin to take on a more round shape.
Pull on the deep flexor keeps the heels unloaded a bit. Bare or shod, a packing such as Equi-Pack is about the only option to aid expansion considering the fact that club feet tend to have a weak frog.

Quote:
Instead I'm seeing a hoof that is becoming more oval and elongated. The heel is actually coming further back, while the toe length is getting longer. The weird thing is, from looking at it from a side view, it would not be evident that is happening under there. The toe does not appear to be flared, the hoof still looks very much upright, and the toe callous is right at the edge of the toe.
Still likely due to leverage at the toe. The nice thing about shoes is they allow one to reduce leverage w/o reducing healthy, useable wall. This is especially important w/ a club foot due to the fact that they tend to be lacking in sole depth at the tip of the coffin bone.

Quote:
My question is, do you encourage a known abnormal foot to take on a normal shape? Is it normal for a club foot to assume a more oval shape? It all seems to be working just fine for him, so I don't want to force something that might never happen when it's working just fine for now.
As much as I hate to say it, It Depends.

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post #8 of 17 Old 02-29-2012, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by bntnail View Post
Pull on the deep flexor keeps the heels unloaded a bit. Bare or shod, a packing such as Equi-Pack is about the only option to aid expansion considering the fact that club feet tend to have a weak frog.
The frog on this foot is just finally getting some contact with the ground and starting to spread out, so time will tell if it can become less weak I suppose.


Quote:
Still likely due to leverage at the toe.
I agree that the toes still need to come back a bit. What's puzzling me is, if the toe needs to come back, why does everything appear to be nice and tight under there with the toe callus right where it should be? I'm afraid I would be blowing right through white line if we take it back. Unless I'm looking at it wrong, he does have nice depth developing at the toe.


Quote:
As much as I hate to say it, It Depends.
Yeah, "it depends" is really always the answer. Just looking for some input from folks with first hand knowledge of club foot.

Here's a recent pic of the aforementioned club. As an aside, I rasped off just the tip of the toe flare last week to keep things in check. Two days later the sole got all flakey, the heels lowered a tad on their own, the bars broke off to a perfect straight line and now the sole is hardening up again. This foot is attempting to trim itself.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg r-solar-2-28.jpg (40.9 KB, 190 views)
File Type: jpg r-45-2-28.jpg (38.5 KB, 212 views)

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post #9 of 17 Old 02-29-2012, 10:04 PM
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Are you doing your own trimming?

If so, CLEAN UP THAT **** FROG!

Otherwise, looks OK from here.

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post #10 of 17 Old 02-29-2012, 10:08 PM Thread Starter
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hee hee. No I'm not doing the trimming. He's only 34 days into his new barefoot status, so we've been doing as little as possible,and as much as necessary. All 4 of his frogs are suddenly shedding and looking like crap, so my trimmer's coming out next week.

What do you think about that toe? Would you still bring that back, or acknowledge club foot and leave it long?

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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