Thin soled 2 year old
 
 

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Thin soled 2 year old

This is a discussion on Thin soled 2 year old within the Hoof Care forums, part of the Horse Health category
  • Best diet for thin soled horses
  • Trimming a 2 year old horse with bad hooves

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    11-03-2012, 04:02 PM
  #1
Foal
Question Thin soled 2 year old

Hi there,
I purchased a 2 year old paint stallion a few months ago. We had him gelded within a few days because we just weren't wanting to deal with a stallion. I want to send him off to begin training soon, but I have been having some issues with him ever since I got him. I'm hoping I didn't just purchase a horse that had underlying health issues (shame on me for not getting a vet check) but he moved perfectly fine when we met him.

Anyway, at first I thought he was walking funny due to the gelding. But then a month passed and he was still walking "funny". And he didnt want to do much else than walk. My farrier was out to trim him and agreed that he looked "off". I took him to the vet for a lameness check. They said he was sore on all four feet and xrays revealed thin soles (I think he said 6 mm but I can't recall for sure). There was no bone rotation or anything like that. He suggested shoes and rest for 2-3 weeks. But he also said it would be quickly apparent if the shoes were going to help. I have tried to work him slowly on the lunge line with no results. I didn't push him.

Now it has been 5 weeks since the shoes went on. He walks just fine but doesn't want to trot at all. I see him occasionally running in the pasture but it isn't long lived and he NEVER trots. I have a follow up appointment at the vet this week.

Any words of wisdom? Either he is hurting or he is EXTREMELY lazy. I've been putting durasole on his feet for about a week. Ever seen anything like this in such a young horse? I attached his xrays on his front feet
     
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    11-03-2012, 04:12 PM
  #2
Super Moderator
Diet - what is he fed? Personally I would never shoe a 2yr old the internal structures of the hoof have not developed fully and will be restricted from doing so (like the poor hooves racehorses have from being shod so young). Diet and movement will grow thick soles not paint on things. A high sugar diet (grass or molasses) can lead to thin soles.

This forum is full of very helpful hoof people Phoenixhorse :: Index
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    11-03-2012, 04:42 PM
  #3
Foal
what he eats

Before I got him he was eating whole oats with a handful of sweet feed. He was mostly kept up inside a show barn eating hay free choice and lots of oats. Right now he is on a 12% pellet complete feed but I don't feed him much of it since he is just out in the pasture. He also gets some jiggs hay. I do have him on a hoof supplement but just recently started that.

As for the shoes, it was the vet's recommendation so I followed it. Normally I wouldn't have put him in shoes at his age. He is a little over 2 1/2 and he is a big guy at 15.2 and 1100 pounds.
     
    11-03-2012, 04:58 PM
  #4
Super Moderator
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrg8302    
Before I got him he was eating whole oats with a handful of sweet feed. He was mostly kept up inside a show barn eating hay free choice and lots of oats. Right now he is on a 12% pellet complete feed but I don't feed him much of it since he is just out in the pasture. He also gets some jiggs hay. I do have him on a hoof supplement but just recently started that.

As for the shoes, it was the vet's recommendation so I followed it. Normally I wouldn't have put him in shoes at his age. He is a little over 2 1/2 and he is a big guy at 15.2 and 1100 pounds.

I'm no expert on oats but they are high starch and can lead to soft soles. If he were mine I would get him on a high fibre low sugar diet (beware of sugar in grass) and a really good hoof supplement with linseed. Hope the soles improve. Some vets follow traditional answers such as shoeing as it offers a quick fix, but shoes will not help him grow a thicker sole and long term could mean his hooves wont grow as strong as they could simply due to being shod so young.
     
    11-03-2012, 05:12 PM
  #5
Yearling
Mrg8302-If I were you I'd listen to the vet and farrier who have actually seen the horse and watched him travel. Not some random person on HF who's on a barefoot mission and hell-bent on *******izing the necessary, proven practice of farriery.

Shoeing young has nothing to do with TB's poor hoof structure. Genetics does. Shoeing doesn't cause thin soles, pinched heels, poor circulation, or anything else the wacky barefoot movement claims
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    11-03-2012, 05:20 PM
  #6
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrg8302    
He was mostly kept up inside a show barn eating hay free choice and lots of oats

Heres your problem. You have almost an adult size horse body that hasnt been feed a nutritionally balanced diet sounds like, fed lots of carbs standing on 2 year old feet that are underdeveloped (probably more like yearling feet developmentally in the digital cusion Id bet. Looks crushed from the weight on a jello baby DC) because he wasnt turned out over rough terrain and moving to develop them. He also appears to have a run forward toe and is high low/grazing foot.


Horses develop their feet. No horse has fully developed feet till they are at least 5 or so and stop growing.... and that is assuming they were turned out on rough ground and actually moved around using the foot to develop it. (soft pasture doesnt develop feet) What your vet prescribed is going to make the horse comfortable for the short term sure, but unless you want a bad footed horse all his life, you need to make some real changes NOW before he is fully mature and allow his foot to develop properly. He still can grow a proper good foot with some knowledge.

Best way to fix and develop those feet? IMO it is to turn him out over varied terrain 24-7. Needs to have rough hard areas that he uses daily. No stalling. Use rubber shoes or hoof boots when protection is needed but allow him to USE his foot when he is turned out. He needs a diet low in carbs and with balanced nutrition that covers hoof growth. I like Triple Crowns Ration balancer for the horse who doesnt need alot of calories.

Most of all he needs a trim that encourages a short toe with proper breakover done by someone who is GOOD at trimming and movement movement movement.
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    11-03-2012, 05:57 PM
  #7
Foal
whew!

Thank you for some good pieces of advice. At least it sounds like there is still some hope for him. I was starting to worry I had a two year old that was destined to be lame.

I've done a lot of reading on low carb diets and think that might be a good thing for him. I did start him on a good hoof supplement so hopefully that will help things out.

I guess I need to be more careful when purchasing horses, even if it seems that they are coming from a reputable breeder. This was the first horse I have purchased in quite some time. I always had my 2 show horses who were older and had no health issues. Unfortunately we had to retire one due to arthritis and we lost my gelding last year to epm. I finally decided to get another horse and have had nothing but problems with him so far. But I'm glad to hear that it might be ok after all with some changes.

I'll have to post back on Wed with any updates from his vet.
     
    11-03-2012, 06:05 PM
  #8
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmazinCaucasian    
mrg8302-If I were you I'd listen to the vet and farrier who have actually seen the horse and watched him travel. Not some random person on HF who's on a barefoot mission and hell-bent on *******izing the necessary, proven practice of farriery.

Shoeing young has nothing to do with TB's poor hoof structure. Genetics does. Shoeing doesn't cause thin soles, pinched heels, poor circulation, or anything else the wacky barefoot movement claims
Hummm yes it does!
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    11-03-2012, 08:19 PM
  #9
Trained
Ugh. 6mm sole thickness is nothing. He'd be ouchy with or without shoes. Maybe add some of that vettec softpak stuff over his soles along with shoes for a few cycles until his soles have time to thicken. The xrays seem to indicate his trimming is okay. No long toes, high heels or otherwise very bad trimming going on. I'd address this from a point of diet and movement. The more you can keep him moving around the better. Obviously he needs to first and foremost be comfortable, hence the vettec softpak suggetion. Keep him turned out as much as you can. Trick him into moving around by putting hay in small piles in different spots instead of all in one place. Any sweet stuff you can eliminate from the diet will also help. Luckily he's young, so his feet should get better if you make a appropriate adjustments. Good luck.
     
    11-04-2012, 01:25 AM
  #10
Trained
Hi,

Be interested to see some hoof/horse pics(check link below) too & more info. Is he comfortable on any surfaces? Is he particularly uncomfortable/lame doing certain things - like on a circle or such? - Obviously he'll be worse on stony ground. What in that way has changed since shoes? Did the vet mention anything else with regard to lameness & those rads?

Agree with Trinity & mostly with Clava. Disagree strongly with Amazin, except in not just taking anyone's word for it - especially but not only on an internet forum - blindly. Just because someone is a vet doesn't mean to say they should be taken on blind faith either IMO. I won't start on 'necessary & proven practices' & racehorse's feet.

I agree fully about diet for starters - get him off grain/starchy feed & onto a healthy, low starch diet. Good, well balanced nutrition also plays an important part & something like feedxl.com will help you work that out.

'If you don't use it, you lose it' is an appropriate saying to keep in mind regarding horse's hooves. Just like you'll lose - or you won't develop - the callouses on your feet if you only ever walk bare on shag pile. Of course a 2yo will have little to lose, because he won't have developed that much in the first place, particularly being stabled all his life.

Even in 'ideal' situations, horses don't *begin* to develop their caudal hoof(digital cushion, etc) until around 4yo. Unfortunately, due to living environment, shoeing, etc, many domestic horses never do & have a squishy, weak 'foals' DC throughout life. That is one reason why I disagree with shoeing a horse under about 6yo min.

Re shoes for this problem, yes, they can help the horse *be more comfortable*, but without pads they provide no protection for the thin soles, and peripherally loading the foot, especially without providing support underneath tends to cause them to become thinner, among other things. So if you are going to shoe, I'd at least be filling his feet with Vettec or such. But I'd be inclined to use padded hoof boots(or even just Vettec Soleguard alone, as he's not yet in work, so it should last reasonably when he's just in the paddock.

His soles don't need to be harder & more brittle, but they need to *grow* thicker. Therefore I wouldn't bother with the paint, but I would be protecting & supporting them.
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