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.
There is little point in comparing a club foot to a non-club with any expectation of similar landmarks. A club is a congenital/sepsis/trauma induced condition that cannot "correct", regardless protocol.
Instead I'm seeing a hoof that is becoming more oval and elongated.
Reasonably expected outcome. You cannot add mass/volume via trimming and therefore cannot exceed the physical parameter limits of the insensitive hoof capsule in any attempt to further alter mechanical breakover, support or phalangeal alignment
The heel is actually coming further back, while the toe length is getting longer.
The only way to increase the base of support on a barefoot club is to remove material (e.g. lower the heels). Do so and the already functionally shortened deep digital flexor musculotendonous structure increases pull on the distal phalanx, further compressing the vascular bed under the solar margin of P3, further compromising solar depth. The only advantage is reduced strain on the suspensory extensors and superficial digital tendon. Long term likely effect... demineralization and remodeling of the solar margin of P3.
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.
It's not "weird", it is typical of a horse presenting this condition. There is no equine anatomical structure called a "toe callous". Said "callous" is more likely a physiologic response to environment and pressure on solar tissues.
My question is, do you encourage a known abnormal foot to take on a normal shape?
What's "normal" for a horse presenting a club foot?
Is it normal for a club foot to assume a more oval shape?
Nope. If it does, it wasn't a club foot to begin with.
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.
While it may be working "just fine for him", there are unfortunate, long term deleterious results of the mechanics associated with a club foot. One can significantly prolong such results via various protocol management methodologies, but the end game is invariably predictable and unavoidable.
Time is a predator, DDFT pull is relentless and once a club, always a club, regardless our visual perception, hopes or desires.