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Trimming your our horse's hooves.

This is a discussion on Trimming your our horse's hooves. within the Hoof Care forums, part of the Horse Health category
  • Trimming for correct break over
  • Breakover farrier definition

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    05-30-2012, 12:28 PM
  #11
Green Broke
Gonna have to agree with Mark, go back and read your own posts, Even if the guy you are using is the most professional educated person in the world, Come on now 7 YEARS ! Time for a change. Many draft breeds simply need shoes. All the wishful thinking in the world can't change that. Generations of selective breeding for strength and size has created an animals who's evolution of feet hasnt kept up. Even if I am clueless and Mark is wrong , 7 YEARS ! Time for a different treatment method.
     
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    05-30-2012, 12:35 PM
  #12
Showing
I have to agree with Mark here as well. I DID learn how to trim myself (books, videos, help from couple farriers and friends who trim themselves, intensive class in university by prof farrier with hands on). However there are lots of things to consider, in particularly I found correct angle + balance to be the hardest part to achieve. Sure, I have no problem with trimming pasture puff and I do touch-ups regularly on my own horses, but with my horses (that do ring work and most likely jumping soon) I'd much rather be sure they are done correctly and I won't have problems in long run.

P.S. Plus, yes, when there is an emergency it's hard (if possible at all) to get a good farrier out that you don't use on regular basis. Been there myself...
loosie likes this.
     
    05-30-2012, 09:35 PM
  #13
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Horseman56    
Vertical cracks in the equine hoof wall are almost always caused by mechanical imbalance and subsequent distortion of the hoof capsule. Exceptions may include chronic abscess and trauma.
We're talking about treatment, not what caused the crack in the first place though. I agree thoroughly that correct trimming, not just 'mustang rolling' is a necessary part of the equation, but even assuming excellent mechanics, cracks can often be perpetuated due to infection not being adequately treated. IME this often takes more than topical applications & good trimming.

Without more info at very least, I'm not going to assume the trimmer is a dunce & just because 'mustang roll' is all Captain mentioned I'm not going to assume that's all the trimmer does, or that because they've had the horse for 7 years means they've been using that particular trimmer for long, let alone that long. I personally disagree with 'pledging oaths' against shoes or any such - sounds fanatical to me, but that's my personal opinion & I don't believe it's here or there regarding crack treatment.

Now, after saying the above, I will again say that *if* this trimmer has been working on this horse for more than a handful trims and there has been no obvious improvement, then I would definitely entertain the possibility that trimming &/or treatment is incorrect &/or inadequate. That could indeed mean the trimmer is a goose, or it could mean there's more to the story than the little we've been told.

Quote:
Horses don't really "break-over" on the hind feet! They break over at the fronts.

It is more correct to describe the final stage of the hind landing phase as unloading versus breakover.
Please explain? I obviously have a different perception of the term to you. Breakover to me basically means the point around the toe(assuming the horse is travelling straight) in a stride, when the heel has lifted off the ground. Based on that, I can't work out how a horse wouldn't have a 'breakover' on his backs unless he has some weird gait that causes him to lift his toes off the ground first, or levelly?
     
    05-31-2012, 01:29 AM
  #14
Weanling
My stuff from earlier post...

Quote:
Horses don't really "break-over" on the hind feet! They break over at the fronts.

It is more correct to describe the final stage of the hind landing phase as unloading versus breakover. The "mustang roll" has little effect on a hind hoof presenting serious toe or quarter cracks.
Your question...

Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie    
Please explain? I obviously have a different perception of the term to you. Breakover to me basically means the point around the toe(assuming the horse is travelling straight) in a stride, when the heel has lifted off the ground. Based on that, I can't work out how a horse wouldn't have a 'breakover' on his backs unless he has some weird gait that causes him to lift his toes off the ground first, or levelly?
Breakover is a somewhat poorly defined term in farriery. Same holds true for the term "balance".

Some will define breakover as the first point at which the heel leaves the ground as the horse's center of mass passes over the front, supporting limb.

Still others will define breakover as that moment just before the toe leaves the ground, well after the center of mass has passed over the axis of the limb.

The later is the more common use of the term and tends to include discussion surrounding the phalangeal lever length as it pertains to ground reaction force at the dorsal aspect of the hoof wall. I am more inclined to agree with this camp but the argument is an exercise in academics.

The debate is arguing points on the arc formed by the distal interphalangeal joint. Since these are dynamic versus static vector torque forces, the discussion should better focus on scalar length measured from the center of articulation of the dip joint to the ground. That lever length is typically greatest at the toe hence our point of greatest ground reaction force during the breakover phase of stride.

The hinds present a completely different set of dynamic and static mechanics. The reason is the reciprocating mechanics of the SI/Femorotibial/femoropatellar/tarsus joint relationship. You simply cannot compare this to the hinged joint arrangement of the supporting forelimbs.

The forelimb carpus/fetlock/pastern joints are hinged joints with limited condyliod movement. Movement is largely limited to flexion and extension. There is a slight allowance for abduction and adduction, particularly at the DIPJ.

Breakover applies because the forelimb is essentially a support only device with movement limited to a single axial plane. Best to think of the forelimb as spokes in a wagon wheel. The horse just "rolls" over that planted foot. As the body mass passes over the center of the limb, ground reaction force increases at the dorsal toe with the maximum force value occurring when the mass is directly over the center of articulation. The shorter the phalangeal lever, the smaller the ground reaction force; hence, the oft cited need to "shorten the toe". Of course, doing so also reduces the resultant kinetic (spring) force stored in the suspensories. That is why the "long toe is faster" story still prevails on the backside of so many parimutuels.

The hind limb is all about propulsion with the stay apparatus largely responsible for static support. That propulsion comes from a reciprocating pivot joint arrangement versus the hinged joint arrangement of the forelimbs. The center of mass is always forward of the limb axis so breakover ground reaction force is largely irrelevant. The horse doesn't so much "roll" over the limb axis as he simply "picks the foot up" or... unloads it.

The wear and distortion we see at the front toe is a consequence of friction, load and breakover ground reaction force. The wear we see at the hind toe is a consequence of the horse pushing off. Have you noticed that you rarely see a "dishy" toe on the hinds? If anything, you're more likely to see either a dubbed toe on the hind or simply an overly long toe but not necessarily dished. Yes, let it get long enough and it will eventually curl up, but it's usually not the same "ski-slope" distortion we see on the fronts.

Interesting experiment. Using a horse with excess wall length (we don't want to leave him like this!), trim conservatively to medial/lateral imbalance in the fronts and move the horse. What happens? Depending on the imbalance, the horse will land unevenly and wing or paddle through the stride. He'll land on the high side, drop to the low side, then breakover at a diagonal to the higher heel.

Now do the same thing on the hinds. What happens? The hoof will twist medial/lateral during the load/unload phase of the stride! You can see the reciprocating movement at the hocks.

Front legs are wagon wheel spokes that "breakover" and serve mainly to keep the horses nose out of the dirt.

Hinds are piston rods on a reciprocating crankshaft that "unload" and define the horse as a rear wheel drive animal. Any breakover of the hinds is really a directional force vector at the toe as the horse pushes then unloads the hoof. We can encourage that "breakover" direction (and stride) using square toed, blunt toed or offset toe hind shoes

This dynamic biomechanical description is best suited to discussing the horse moving at speed on a relatively level surface. Things change somewhat on hills, particularly going uphill when the animal will stronly engage the forelimb flexors to assist in locomotion. The discussion is largely irrelevant to static mechanics.

There are still a lot of track platers and trainers that put much stock in the idea of the horse pulling itself along with the fronts as a significant part of locomotion. That's why you still see the toe grabs on a lot of racing plates. The resultant injuries associated with the increased traction of those grabs is also why most tracks have either banned toe grabs or limited them to 2mm in height. From their perspective, increased breakover length in the forelimb is a good thing.

So... given this explanation of breakover as relates phalangeal length in the supporting limb, shall we talk about big lick walkers?

Cheers,
Mark
     
    05-31-2012, 03:10 AM
  #15
Trained
Great explanation, thanks! Usually follow the terminology OK, but what's 'parimutuels' mean??
     
    05-31-2012, 09:30 AM
  #16
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie    
Great explanation, thanks! Usually follow the terminology OK, but what's 'parimutuels' mean??
TB/QH racetracks.

Cheers,
Mark
     
    05-31-2012, 01:10 PM
  #17
Weanling
There is a lot of interesting information & opinions in this post; I am really enjoying it. I ahve printed out some of the posts for later perusal...

[QUOTE=loosie;1524912]
Without more info at very least, I'm not going to assume the trimmer is a dunce & just because 'mustang roll' is all Captain mentioned I'm not going to assume that's all the trimmer does, or that because they've had the horse for 7 years means they've been using that particular trimmer for long, let alone that long.

Loosie is correct: I didn't give all the information re: this trimmer & Ahab's hoof crack, as it seemed too long.

We first bought Ahab seven years ago with this massive hoof crack, and we spoke to the then farrier about it. He said the horse had had it for as long as he knew the horse, and that it had never caused any problem. The horse seemed good in every other way, so we bought him. He was barefoot at the time, though he had been in parades and had pulled carts, so he may have been shod before; I don't remember if the owner told us.

The first farrier to trim him after we got him worked with him for about a year, then she didn't show up for an appointment - turned out she followed a boyfriend out West somewhere...

Frantic hunt for a farrier: found a very popular farrier used by some of the local barns, but I hated his work! He would only come every eight weeks, no matter what, and the horses had long long long toes! I had him for two years, and never resolved those issues. Finally we moved, and he said that his apprentice would take over, but I was not happy. So, hunt for a new farrier...
Found a natural hoof guy who never spoke, but I liked his trims right away. He came every six weeks for about six trims and then mysteriously did not show up. Their website went dead, and I never heard what happened.

I really did not want to go back to Long Toes, even though I heard through the grapevine that he was asking about my horses... So the horses are not being done, and weeks are going by...

It took me a while, but I found a professional with all kinds of credentials and natural farrier seminars & stuff...

He came from over an hour away, and he warned me that it would be costly... $385.00 for the two horses (that's okay, I was desperate and agreed to pay whatever he needed to show up) the two horses looked exactly as they did before he arrived. Exactly! The money didn't bother me nearly as much as the massive disappointment that my problem was still with me! He did say that both horses were going to require shoes, and that Ahab needed some corrective shoeing, which I was listening to, except that both horses looked EXACTLY as they had before he trimmed them. I would have listened more, but the trims looked so bad. Huge long toes, squished in heels, and with the hoof wall curling under their heels. Nothing was different after he was done, yet he seemed really pleased with his work.

So then I found this guy, and it has been a long go. Ahab was with him for about a year, then he went to live on a farm who used Long Toes for a farrier (a year and a half) and then he has been back with me since December. My current trimmer comes about every five weeks. He charged fifty dollars for my Arab (now dead) and seventy for the Percheron, and I give him thirty more as he travels quite a distance to get here.

I really think the crack is diminishing. It is more of a gigantic indentnow, with hoof behind it, whereas before it looked like an open crack right through. I may be delusional though. I took some photos yesterday but the quality was too poor, so I try again to get some decent shots.
     
    05-31-2012, 09:33 PM
  #18
Trained
Quote:
yet he seemed really pleased with his work.
I'm sure it's not what you want to hear, but after shaking my head at the rest, that bit made me giggle!

Be interested to see the pics.
     
    05-31-2012, 09:37 PM
  #19
Green Broke
Capt. I can totally relate. There are definitely a lot of crappy trimmers and farriers out there. I had the same problem. Take pictures to document his progress. You should see some difference after a couple trims.
Now, let's hear about those big lick horses.
     
    05-31-2012, 11:42 PM
  #20
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by flytobecat    
Now, let's hear about those big lick horses.
What is that about?? A breed or a behavioural trait??
     

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