I entrusted my horse to a friend while I left for a 7 week trip. It was well understood that I was still financially responsible for my horse, and that if anything was needed, my friend was to call me, and I would get it dealt with.
Right before I left for my trip, my horse had his feet trimmed. His hooves grow quite quickly, so I was surprised to hear, during my regular updates while travelling, that he didn't need a hoof trim, and was doing just fine. I thought this could be possible, considering he was out on 75 acres of varied terrain and could possibly be somewhat self trimming.
I arrived home from my trip and wasn't able to get up to see my horse until a week later- so 8 weeks from his last trim, almost to the day.
I was absolutely appaled when I arrived. I had another friend, who is a certified barefoot trimmer, coming up to trim him that day, and am very glad I did, as I wouldn't have known where to even begin.
(I will post pictures when my friend sends them.)
I actually cried a bit when I saw the state of his feet- they were not just 'long'... they were about 1 3/4" too long, dry as a desert and with some deep and long cracks, and starting to 'self trim,' with pieces having broken off.
I'm very upset and angered that when I asked my friend directly if he needed a trim, I was told 'no,' when it was extremely obvious that he did!
My horse is also overweight at this point, I'm going to guess about a 7 on the Henneke Body Scoring Chart (though I am not an expert by any stretch).
Also, the way his feet were wearing was a-typical; he had very long toes, with no wearing at all. Normally, when he is due for a trim, he has flaring out to the sides, but the toe is worn.
Those last two points, combined with the fact that he was laying down when I went to catch him (though that could be somewhat irrelevant) lead me to think that he may be in the beginning stages of laminitis, leaning back to take weight off his fronts, etc.
In addition to that, once we started trimming him, it was discovered that the soles of 3 of his hooves are extensively bruised- the only one without entensive bruising has a small injury mid-cannon bone, I assume from a kick from one of the other horses in the field, that as a result he was favouring.
My course of action at that point was:
-finish trimming what we could, schedule for next week;
-get him off of that pasture and on to a dry lot with no grass (only a couple hours later);
-pad his front hooves (1 1/2" styrofoam, then vet wrap, then duct tape) to provide some comfort;
-conditioning his hooves with coconut oil
**which is also anti-fungal; this is good since trimmer believes that the cracks may have something to do with a fungus**
-control his food intake, for weight loss;
-supplement his omega-3 intake, to help moisturize his hooves.
It was also suggested to me that I use something to 'toughen' his soles, to help with the bruising while it's healing- I cannot find a product thorughly researched enough that I agree with using it- does anybody have a natural solution, or another idea overall?
My poor Whiskey was given some bute tonight as well, I just couldn't stand to see him as sore as he is.
Please, any advice would be appreciated. If I left out any information that would be helpful please just ask.