Barefoot farrier frustration
 
 

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Barefoot farrier frustration

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  • Farrier won't let horse go barefoot
  • Farrier took off too much sole

 
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    05-31-2011, 09:00 PM
  #1
Trained
Barefoot farrier frustration

Here is the issue. My newer guy, has taken some time to get barefoot. Like all winter, letting him grow out to a point where the shoes basically "fell" off, and he has been barefoot and sound. (Only lame steps this guy has ever taken has been last year when I tried to pull shoes to get him barefoot). Anyway, when I returned to NY for the summer, he needs trimming. Since our regular farrier has a tendency to trim them a little short, we, at the barn, decide to try a "new" barfoot guy. He comes, does all the horses, and-naturally, mine is the one who needs lots trimmed off (or so he says). I am not a fan of this guy, since he is the type who is trying to sell me his naturally green tee oil stuff for thrush (that has never been an issue), etc. I am also not a huge believer that all horses should be trimmed the same, which is seemingly what he is trying to sell me.

Anyway-my guy comes up lame the next day. UGH! So, I call him. He comes out, tells me to put Emu oil on the feet daily, and that it will take abotu 6-10 days. Ok-well, it has been 2 weeks, my guy is still off slightly in the front, especially if he steps on a stone.(he was FINE walking on stones prior to this idiot). AND, this guy want to come back in another week and do another trim, since supposedly my horse has SO much sole....I am not inclined to have him back-ever!

Barefoot people-am I being unreasonable? Am I wrong that all horses should not be trimmed the same? HELP!

I have guy with great hard feet, who I finally had barefoot for the last 6 months and now this. I am frustrated and have no clue what to do. I really don't think he needs shoes-he has the bast feet ever-no chips, crack, hard as a rock, and I ride him mostly on grass and dirt, not a lot of rocks at all.

THanks for the help!
     
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    05-31-2011, 09:47 PM
  #2
Trained
While I just dream about having my horse barefoot, sounds like this guy just isn't the farrier for your horse. Do you have some boots you can put on your horse until his feet grow out a bit and then you can find a better barefoot guy? Your logic is sound. If you horse was never lame before, it doesn't make sense that he is suddenly no longer a barefoot candidate. Sounds like this guy just took off too much.
     
    05-31-2011, 11:31 PM
  #3
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by franknbeans    
I am also not a huge believer that all horses should be trimmed the same, which is seemingly what he is trying to sell me.
Quote:
AND, this guy want to come back in another week and do another trim, since supposedly my horse has SO much sole
These two lines would make me run the other way. I've trimmed out mares myself for years and although the basics are the same, they each have very different feet that grow and wear differently. As for sole, some farriers/trimmers love their hoof knife, but a barefoot horse depends on that sole, and it is very rare that I would ever touch it (or the frog) for anything other than hygienic purposes.
     
    05-31-2011, 11:34 PM
  #4
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by franknbeans    
Like all winter, letting him grow out to a point where the shoes basically "fell" off, and he has been barefoot and sound.
Hi, I'm guessing he's got unusually good feet then, if the above is accurate, because most horses, even if they start out OK, will suffer for being left way too long in shoes without care.

Quote:
(Only lame steps this guy has ever taken has been last year when I tried to pull shoes to get him barefoot).
But then this seems to contradict the above...??

Quote:
am not a fan of this guy, since he is the type who is trying to sell me his naturally green tee oil stuff for thrush (that has never been an issue), etc. I am also not a huge believer that all horses should be trimmed the same, which is seemingly what he is trying to sell me.
To be fair, thrush can indeed be a problem without owners noticing - deep central sulcus thrush for eg. Regarding all horses being trimmed the same, I agree that that would be a bad principle to work to, assuming that's actually the case. What do you/he mean by trimming the same? Does he measure angles & lengths & then attempt to cut the foot to an 'ideal'?

Quote:
Anyway-my guy comes up lame the next day. UGH! So, I call him. He comes out, tells me to put Emu oil on the feet daily, and that it will take abotu 6-10 days. Ok-well, it has been 2 weeks, my guy is still off slightly in the front, especially if he steps on a stone.(he was FINE walking on stones prior to this idiot). AND, this guy want to come back in another week and do another trim, since supposedly my horse has SO much sole...
Again, to be fair, without much info, only your opinions to go on, wouldn't want to judge. It could always have been a coincidence that the horse went lame post trim, but especially in light of the 'so much sole' comment, it's very possible the trim could have been at fault. Did he pare sole last time? Was he trying to carve in concavity by any chance?

If your horse is lame & has been for that long, I'd be inclined to call a *good* vet who's experienced with lameness. The horse may have copped a stone bruise through thinned soles, which has abscessed. You may also need to protect/support the bottom of his feet with pads/boots or such(not conventional metal rims) for the time being too, if he's been very aggressively trimmed.

So... I couldn't judge a situation or person over the internet, especially with so little info, so I couldn't say whether you're reasonable or unreasonable about this farrier, but I personally don't believe cutting to preconceived angles/lengths is a good thing, or that paring sole & frog generally(there are exceptions) is either, and if he did pare sole, it is quite possible it was farrier error that caused the lameness. Again, there are exceptions and coincidences, so don't automatically jump to blame, but as a rule, horses should be the same or better after a trim, not more tender/lame from it.
     
    06-01-2011, 06:35 AM
  #5
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaintHorseMares    
These two lines would make me run the other way. I've trimmed out mares myself for years and although the basics are the same, they each have very different feet that grow and wear differently. As for sole, some farriers/trimmers love their hoof knife, but a barefoot horse depends on that sole, and it is very rare that I would ever touch it (or the frog) for anything other than hygienic purposes.
This was what we had been doing, and it was working. Pretty much the philosophy of the farrier where we were in VA who helped me get this guy barefoot in the first place.
     
    06-01-2011, 06:53 AM
  #6
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie    
Hi, I'm guessing he's got unusually good feet then, if the above is accurate, because most horses, even if they start out OK, will suffer for being left way too long in shoes without care.

He does seem to have unusually great feet. Every farrier who has ever done him says the same thing.

But then this seems to contradict the above...?? sorry-here is what happened-I initially tried him barefoot last summer. My regular farrier pulled the front shoes (all he has ever had), trimmed, and naturally, the horse was off. After about 2 weeks, since he was in training and not able to work, we put the shoes back on with the thought of working toward barefoot over the winter. I had his feet done in Octobder (with the shoes) took him back to VA for the winter, where we basically let his shoes grow off. They came off after about 12 weeks, when wedid very little except for a little trim, rasp the adges, and he was fine all winter-until now, with basic trims every 6 wks or so. Now back in NY-so tried this guy.



To be fair, thrush can indeed be a problem without owners noticing - deep central sulcus thrush for eg. Regarding all horses being trimmed the same, I agree that that would be a bad principle to work to, assuming that's actually the case. What do you/he mean by trimming the same? He expects that when he is done, when the horses foot hits, all the footprints will look the same. Literally. He finishes, sprays them with his vinegar solution and takes pride in the fact that they ALL have the same footprint. This includes everything from my draft to a mini and all in between.Does he measure angles & lengths & then attempt to cut the foot to an 'ideal'? Yup. And I am not a believer that they all should be the same,



Again, to be fair, without much info, only your opinions to go on, wouldn't want to judge. It could always have been a coincidence that the horse went lame post trim, but especially in light of the 'so much sole' comment, it's very possible the trim could have been at fault. Did he pare sole last time? This was the first time he had touched my horse.Was he trying to carve in concavity by any chance?yes. He wanted to see the bars.....trimmed sole, lots of it, then said we have to let him be a couple weeks, so that the foot can spread, then come back and trim more sole.

If your horse is lame & has been for that long, I'd be inclined to call a *good* vet who's experienced with lameness. The horse may have copped a stone bruise through thinned soles, which has abscessed. You may also need to protect/support the bottom of his feet with pads/boots or such(not conventional metal rims) for the time being too, if he's been very aggressively trimmed. Again-last year when we tried him barefoot, it was 2 weeks, until we put his shoes back on, that he was lame. He is not 3 legged at this point, just hitting wrong. He is hitting with his toe first on the left front. Really more a difference I can hear than see, honestly.

So... I couldn't judge a situation or person over the internet, especially with so little info, so I couldn't say whether you're reasonable or unreasonable about this farrier, but I personally don't believe cutting to preconceived angles/lengths is a good thing, or that paring sole & frog generally(there are exceptions) is either, and if he did pare sole, it is quite possible it was farrier error that caused the lameness. Again, there are exceptions and coincidences, so don't automatically jump to blame, but as a rule, horses should be the same or better after a trim, not more tender/lame from it.
Thanks Loosie-I appreciate your knowledge. I am at a barn where the BO is one of the most respected Chiros in the area. She is extremely good at lameness. She called me the day after the trim before I could get to the barn, and told me it was his feet. I am also totally sure it was the trim. No doubt in my mind. I can get boots, if I need to, but am not sure that will be best in the long run, since he is not 3 legged like last summer. It is very slight, but still there. THis time of year they grow faster, and I am hoping that will be the case. He is moving today to my friends, where it is almost all grass, including the riding ring.So, hopefully that will help.
     
    06-01-2011, 07:43 AM
  #7
Green Broke
If you want your horse to go barefoot, a farrier shouldn't be doing much with the sole. It needs time to callus up. As far as cleaning up the frog there is no wrong in making sure its trim. Leaving it untrim can hide nasty things. I would definitely find a different farrier.
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    06-01-2011, 09:49 PM
  #8
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by franknbeans    
I can get boots, if I need to, but am not sure that will be best in the long run, since he is not 3 legged like last summer. It is very slight, but still there. THis time of year they grow faster, and I am hoping that will be the case. He is moving today to my friends, where it is almost all grass, including the riding ring.So, hopefully that will help.
Yes, while I still don't want to assume just from a post, I strongly suspect you're right to steer clear of this guy & sort of trim. This is one reason why I think it's so important for horse owners to learn the principles for themselves, so they can have a good idea of what is & should be happening... or not, and they can have a fair idea of the competency & principles of hoof care practitioners they consider employing. Hoofrehab.com is one of many good sites to start with.

Re above comments, '3 legged lame' only means it's effecting one foot or worse on one side. If the horse is equally sore bilaterally, or on all feet, he may be 'pottery' or 'ouchy' but won't necessarily limp.

Re boots, again, because he's not actually limping or is not severely tender is no reason not to use them. If he's uncomfortable enough to be 'off' at all or landing toe first, he won't be using his feet properly, so won't be developing them. Therefore, allowing the horse to move comfortably by protecting/supporting feet with boots or such when necessary is important. Also if this guy took a lot of sole/frog material off, he's removed a lot of the natural protection, so if the horse steps on a rock or such, he's likely to bruise/abscess or worse, which may have been the cause of 3 legged lameness last year.

Hope the move goes well and if he's on a heap of grass, lami doesn't become a hassle for you.
     
    06-02-2011, 12:44 AM
  #9
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by franknbeans    
yes. He wanted to see the bars.....trimmed sole, lots of it, then said we have to let him be a couple weeks, so that the foot can spread, then come back and trim more sole.

Sounds very Strasser like to me. IMO Strasser style trims are WAY too overzealous and don't take the horses comfort into ANY account. I avoid Strasser style trims like the plague. Im more of a Pete Ramey kinda gal. I want a sound horse from the get go and don't mind to wait for the foot to transform and spread on its own time while staying sound. I also don't mind using boots when needed or casting.
     
    06-02-2011, 01:04 AM
  #10
Foal
I once tried a barefoot trimmer with my mare, maybe 4 years ago a few months after I first got her. She was barefoot and I rode her everywhere walk-gallop.
The barefoot trimmer came out and RUINED her in a matter of 30 minutes. She couldnt walk even halfway sound for 4 MONTHS...And to this day, 4 years later, she has yet to be sound without shoes and tip toes on rocks. Even some hard ground that's not rocky isnt the easiest for her with a rider. I don't know what she did...if she cut her too short, it would grow back. Maybe she took too much off the sole? She already has very thin soles.
Anyways...I don't fault people for their choice of trimming barefoot or not. Whatever works. But this lady must not of had a clue what she was doing. Of course, never used her again and she's lucky I didnt sure her for the heartache and pain it gave my horse. Good luck in your search for a new one!
     

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