Flexoral Laxity in Foals - A Case Study
   

       The Horse Forum > Keeping and Caring for Horses > Horse Health > Hoof Care

Flexoral Laxity in Foals - A Case Study

This is a discussion on Flexoral Laxity in Foals - A Case Study within the Hoof Care forums, part of the Horse Health category
  • Foal splint
  • Angel toes foals

Like Tree16Likes

 
LinkBack Thread Tools
    04-20-2012, 08:54 PM
  #1
Weanling
Flexoral Laxity in Foals - A Case Study

As most of you know, I'm a farrier. I've been asked a time or two if I work on therapeutic cases. Actually, I do a lot of therapeutic work.

While always the most interesting cases, I rarely take photos due to time constraints involved when working these horses. Today, I made an exception and decided to capture some of my work for review.

I thought some of you may find this topic interesting and educational. I know I did.

Cheers,
Mark

---------------------------------

A common congenital defect in newborn foals is called a flexoral laxity. Usually occurring in the hind limbs, the horse will appear "layed back" on the pasterns, it's toes pointed up and unable to load the bottom of the foot. Abrasion of the heel bulbs, under-run heels and other problems ensue.

Many of these babies will straighten up on their own in the first two months but some are too severe for mother nature to correct. That's when the vet/farrier team needs to step in.

This little girl was born on Easter morning, premature, various health problems including severe flexoral laxity in the forelimbs (somewhat rare).

I was asked to help so attended the horse today.

Here's the "before" photo.






Here she is after I completed installing a therapeutic package. Her toes are now on the ground where they belong. The heels of the "shoes" are extended by 50% the foot length, placed directly under the center of P1. This moved the total base of support back about 40%. Fetlock to ground distance increased by 25%. She can now walk and run. Time and exercise should see the flexoral muscle group develop and help her even more.








Here's how I built the package.

Shoes are cut out of 5/16" inflexible plastic. Heels extended about 1 1/2". The leather pads will be screwed on the bottom of the package to provide wear/protection and traction.







Screw holes are pre-drilled then any protruding tips are ground off flush with the foot surface of the shoes.







The leather and plastic shoe package is assembled to test fit and to "seat out" the screws to maximum depth in the leather.







Here's a side view of the package. The plastic shoe will be taped on the foot with a few spots of glue at the edge of the hoof wall to help hold things in place.







Preparing everything I need before going to the horse. Once you start, there's no time to run back to the trailer for supplies.







The plastic shoe with extended heels is placed on the foot with a few drops of glue to hold it in place. Elasticon tape is then used to secure the shoe in place, avoiding the soft tissues of the pastern. A foals skin is incredibly thin so we need to avoid abrasion.

Cotton Surgical batting is then packed against the back of the fetlock (not shown in this photos) and pushed against the top of the extended heels. This will be vetrapped in place and act to prevent the foal from pulling the shoes off with her hind toes.








With the shoe taped in place, the cotton batting was installed then the pastern loosely wrapped with vetrap to hold the cotton in place and protect the heels. All to avoid the foal tearing off the package when her hinds reach forward.

Final step is to attach the leather pad to the package with four screws. These screws go through the tape and the plastic shoe (not into the foot). Without this layer of leather, the horse would quickly wear through the tape that holds the plastic shoe on. The screw heads provide a bit of traction and will extend the life of the leather "sole".








Final result.... a happy girl that can walk, run and most important, exercise those flexor muscles.




The entire process took me 2 hours and 15 minutes. The foal was not sedated for this procedure.

I'll revisit this foal in two weeks and re-evaluate for changes in hoof growth, muscle development and any changes I need to make to the protocol.

Thought some of you might find this case interesting.

Cheers,
Mark
loosie and AQHA13 like this.
     
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
    04-20-2012, 09:05 PM
  #2
Trained
Wow, glad you could help the cute little thing. So this is due to improperly formed muscles, or just weak muscles? Is there anything done via food or supplements to assist with the muscle development, or is it just a time and movement situation?
     
    04-20-2012, 09:51 PM
  #3
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by MyBoyPuck    
Wow, glad you could help the cute little thing. So this is due to improperly formed muscles, or just weak muscles? Is there anything done via food or supplements to assist with the muscle development, or is it just a time and movement situation?

The problem is generally considered weakened muscle structure due body position while still in the uterus. No definitive science on this but good concensus. Didn't help that the foal was premature.

Yes, she is on various supplements. Mother's milk dried up and Hagyard's Medical Center dealt with eating issues among other metabolic problems. She's been a sick little girl. Getting better now though; hence they called me to work the feet problem.

Cheers,
Mark
     
    04-20-2012, 09:52 PM
  #4
Weanling
Leaving for the Annual Stockhoff's Farrier's Clinic in Kentucky. I'll answer any questions about this case when I return on Sunday.

Cheers,
Mark
     
    04-20-2012, 11:00 PM
  #5
Weanling
Nice job.

Simple(relative to the job) and effective.
     
    04-20-2012, 11:11 PM
  #6
Yearling
If your shoeing doesn't work Dyna Splints rents splints for foals/horses, you can PM me and I'd be happy to give my contact there.
     
    04-20-2012, 11:12 PM
  #7
Trained
Wow, that is amazing. I cannot believe the difference that those "special shoes" made.

What a sweet little baby, I hope she pulls through...
     
    04-20-2012, 11:22 PM
  #8
Yearling
Doesn't this happen more often in mini's than regular horses?

I remember reading something about this and an "Angel Shoe" I think it was called, to correct the problem/give it time to correct itself.
     
    04-21-2012, 10:22 PM
  #9
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rascaholic    
Doesn't this happen more often in mini's than regular horses?
Good question. I'll give you my extremely experienced, very knowledgeable, highly qualified, best answer.

I don't know. ( Good answer, huh? )

Most of the cases I've seen or worked on were light horse breeds and those cases have always presented in the hind limbs. This was my first opportunity to work with a forelimb laxity that required intervention.

I've seen a lot of limb deviations/defects in miniatures. Even more pronounced (and often sad) in the dwarf minis. Don't know that they represent a more common occurrence than found in full size horses. Honestly, I don't get called often to work on the miniatures other than basic trims.

Perhaps someone else will be able to offer more information on the topic.

Quote:
I remember reading something about this and an "Angel Shoe" I think it was called, to correct the problem/give it time to correct itself.
I'm not familiar with an "angel shoe". The package I built... well, to be honest, I just made it up as I went along. Didn't think to give it a "name". I'm confident it's not an original thought. There's very little that's truly "new under the sun" among farriers.

Cheers,
Mark
     
    04-21-2012, 10:53 PM
  #10
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Horseman56    
Good question. I'll give you my extremely experienced, very knowledgeable, highly qualified, best answer.

I don't know. ( Good answer, huh? )
ROFL I like that answer.

Most of the cases I've seen or worked on were light horse breeds and those cases have always presented in the hind limbs. This was my first opportunity to work with a forelimb laxity that required intervention.

I've seen a lot of limb deviations/defects in miniatures. Even more pronounced (and often sad) in the dwarf minis. Don't know that they represent a more common occurrence than found in full size horses. Honestly, I don't get called often to work on the miniatures other than basic trims.

Perhaps someone else will be able to offer more information on the topic.



I'm not familiar with an "angel shoe". The package I built... well, to be honest, I just made it up as I went along. Didn't think to give it a "name". I'm confident it's not an original thought. There's very little that's truly "new under the sun" among farriers.

Cheers,
Mark
I am still looking for the website that shows them...and no it isn't angel shoes. Grr wish I could remember the name.

Who cares if it is an original thought as long as it works for this particular filly :)
     

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Forelimb Flexoral Laxity Horseman56 Hoof Care 4 04-20-2012 08:35 PM
Degrees... What to study for? Jessabel Horse Talk 8 10-14-2009 03:38 AM
Study! LOL WSArabians General Off Topic Discussion 4 08-29-2008 06:58 PM
What's your Occupation/Study etc? meggymoo General Off Topic Discussion 39 07-08-2008 06:47 AM
BHS/STUDY crystal drops Horse Talk 6 04-18-2008 12:02 PM



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 04:26 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0