got a vet out today..she took x-rays and she said that his laminitis is not too severe with only very slight rotation. From my description she said what probably happened was that it was brought on by pulling his shoes,
Great that there's so far little rotation. Did she say or show how high or otherwise the coffin bone was in the capsule - how much sole he has?
I differentiate between lami & founder & would describe your horse as foundered, the coffin bone being already disconnected & rotated or dropped down in the capsule. This is commonly the mechanical progression of laminitis, which is inflammation & subsequent weakening of the laminae which connect horn to foot. Especially if he already has foundered, it's not likely shoe pulling, even extremely rough & ready treatment would have caused anything, but it may have exacerbated an already sensitive situation.
but if we start getting richer bales in we should switch to grass. She said to give him half of the grain that he's getting now, and half stabilized rice bran. He will need to get the shoes back because of the shape of his soles (very flat)....
That the most exercise he should have is just being lead around minimally and can only be turned out to roll but not allowed to run.
The above shows the contrasts between some methods & recent research. Again I emphasise doing your own research so you can make up your own mind on what approaches & 'experts' you will heed. Of course you should not just take my word for it, as some anonymous hoof care practitioner, but I don't think it's any better to blindly trust some other 'experts' opinion either. Rather learn the principles & the pros & cons of each, to make an informed decision either way. So anyway....
I would look further into his diet. Safergrass.org is one good source of info on feeding lami-prone horses, as is FeedXL.com & Pete Ramey hoof care heals founder in horse’s navicular disease farrier
I wouldn't be feeding him on any grain or sweet feed at all. If he needs more beans or weight, there are healthy alternatives for energy.
I disagree totally that conventional shoes will be helpful for this problem, *especially* as he already has very dropped, thin soles. Peripherally loading the foot will effectively hang the horse by his walls, which are already disconnected & not coping with the amount of strain they're already under. They need to be relieved, not further loaded. He will however need support & protection for them though, and I would advise boots and something like Sole Guard to allow the bottom of his feet to *comfortably* take a supporting role as they're meant to, for proper hoof function & therefore begin healing.
Exercise is incredibly important for a horse's health, soundness & rehab & generally speaking, the more the better. Also the more exercise = faster growth, so quicker healing. BUT I don't agree with forcing a horse who is in pain to exercise - not generally helpful, let alone fair. So no. 1 priority would be getting him comfortable, well trimmed & protecting his sensitive feet so that he can do it happily & without further injury thru his thin soles.