Shoeing Critique

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Shoeing Critique

This is a discussion on Shoeing Critique within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    11-05-2009, 11:00 PM
Shoeing Critique

I had my maresí shoes reset this morning and figured Ďwhy not?í... Iíd like to know what needs to be addressed and, well, everything right or wrong and all. Iíll post before and after pictures, though both sets of photos were taken today, this morning. The pics arenít the best... I took the barefoot pictures this morning and the pictures where she has shoes on were taken this afternoon. I only got her front hooves done, so thatís all Iím going to post. Sorry for the ground, too... I didnít want to get in the road just to get hoof pictures. I would like to point out beforehand that her hooves used to be much, much worse before I started using the farrier I do now. The farrier I used before my current one really messed her hooves up... comparing them, then and now, her hooves are like, 90% better and she moves much better now than then.

Front Right, Barefoot

Front Right, Shod

More on next post...
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    11-05-2009, 11:12 PM
Front Left, Barefoot

Front Left, Shod

Thatís all...
    11-05-2009, 11:19 PM
Looks like the toe is out too far to me, horses should bear the most weight on the heels. Of course that takes a while to correct. Doesnt look too much like she's rolling the toe, and setting the shoe back any. That's usually what you do to get the horses breakover back, so they can use more heel and less toe.
    11-05-2009, 11:30 PM
The heels look a bit long to me but considering where her sole and frog are at, it will probably take some time to get them shortened back down. Is she just a touch pigeon toed by chance?
    11-06-2009, 12:53 AM
If that means what I'm thinking... she toes in a little in front... I can't remember if that's pigeon toed or not...

Her fetlock joint in her left leg is twisted, and the bone is twisted, according to the vet, it causes her hoof to grow at an unnatural angle and twist inwards, bt she's sound. We could fix it with corrective shoeing, but the vet told me a few years ago that it would be about a year of no riding and it would cause her some pain as it would force her bone straight... or something like that. I don't remember word-for-word, but I decided to just keep her as she is and the vet agreed saying that as long as it's not giving her any trouble and she's not in pain and is sound, he wouldn't bother with it either.

Before I started using my current farrier, I used this guy who thought everything he did was 'right' and everything I wanted was 'wrong'. He really messed her hoof up and caused it to twist even more and just messed the whole thing up. I started using my current farrier two years ago and he's great... he's looked at her hooves the first time he ever came out and said that he thought we could get her hoof back to 'normal' (for her), but he wasn't going to rush it and was going to take it extremely slow with her. It's taken two years, but her hooves look a ton better than they ever did when my old farrier was shoeing and trimming her and my current farrier has never trimmed her too short and made her 'ouchie' or made her lame after a shoeing like the old one did.

The only problem we have, really, is that her hooves don't grow hardly at all and my farrier doesn't ever really have much to trim/work with... He often says that her hooves are too small for her body, but I think they're good. Any longer and she catches herself... though I think my farrier means he thinks her hooves could be more rounded, as they're more oval shaped than anything...

I'm rambling... I'll shut up and let you more educated peoples talk. Lol...
    11-06-2009, 12:44 PM
If he is saying that they are too small for her body, I bet he is talking about how big around they are, not so much the length. The only reason I asked if she was pigeon toed is that Dobe's feet grow just like that and he is extremely pigeon toed. They kinda grow under on the outside of his feet and flare out on the inside.
    11-06-2009, 01:11 PM
Yeash, her one hoof where she has the twisted fetlock bone grows under on the one side and out of the other, but it's not that bad anymore... I have to really look to tell most of the time, and most people who see her hooves out here, if they didn't already know the problem, they have a hard time pinpointing it.
    11-07-2009, 08:48 PM
Looks like she has a dry fungal infection of the frog. See how the middle cleft looks like a butt crack rather than a wide valley or dimple? That usually indicates an infection that can make a horse pretty sore, enough to not use the heels when landing...and she's a bit contracted, but that could be from the infection cuasing a toe first landing, which is what her barefeet looked like is going on. She's a little wry footed, (asymetrical) with that twist, and shoes can't fix that, neither could a trim, it's just her anatomy, but frequent trims can keep them more balanced. SHoes, as they grow out, can exacerbate it, rather than help.

I'm not going to get on my soapbox about shoes vs bare, just that I think the biggest problem your mare probably has is a thrush infection that needs treatment and some trimming to get her to land on her heels to stimulate that frog/heel area so it can decontract if it's able. You may find that the infection is the source of any all sensitivity, esp on rocky ground and sometimes even deep footing.

Her hooves aren't balanced, even after shod. Any time there is extra height on one side (you can see in the heel to toe angles that the heel height is uneven) compared to the sole level, then it's causing an imbalance in her coffin joint. Even if the horse toes in pretty bad, leaving extra heel on one side to make it straighter can lead to stress in the joint and arthritis. Some horses are better off with a visible defect, that allows even wear inside the joint capsules. The hoof should be trimmed to what the sole indicates, not what is pleasing to the eye when it's on the ground. The extra height can cause not only excess strain on the joints, but crush one heel, become underrun, or even a quarter crack and toe flare, depending on how the horse compensates.
    11-07-2009, 09:26 PM
Thanks! I noticed earlier today when I was leading her before I got on her that she isn't balanced in one hoof... It's the first time in a long time that she's been off balance, usually my farrier is good at keeping her balanced almost perfectly, so I'm not sure what happened this time. It isn't bad at all, though, so next time he's out, I'm going to point it out.

I don't think she has thrush... there's no smell or anything... but I'll look into some sort of bacteria killer thing to put on her hooves.
    11-08-2009, 12:03 AM
The type of infection I am describing doesn't necessarily produce an odor or apparent discharge. The main symptoms are pain and the butt crack appearance. If you stick your hoof pick in there she may just about jump out of her skin, if she's a sensitive type personality. Some stoic horses still try to jerk the hoof away.

This is a case for "Pete's Goo" -get a syringe (no needles, please!) with a catheter tip, or slip tip to apply. Buy some off-brand triple antibiotic (name brand Neosporin Plus) with pain killer, then a tube of Clortrimazole 2% Athelete's foot cream (Lotrimine) and mix 50/50 in a little bowl. Use a butter knife to pack into the syringe...then squirt DEEP into that crack EVERY DAY for at LEAST two weeks. The crevice should become less sensitive and wider by that time, if not, continue on. THis works GREAT! A little goes a long way, and it does work, even in muddy conditions. Your horse may object at first when you stick that syringe in there, as it can be very sore, but it won't work if you don't get it all the way in. A mL per hoof is usually enough.

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