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FirstFed 08-04-2013 10:36 AM

New horse, horrific hooves
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Hello all!
I'm new to here. Was searching for the help of a community of horse people and this is what I came upon. My name is Megan. :) So here it is, I adopted a 10 y/o OTTB, she came from NC to NJ 3 days ago. She had been in NJ 2 years ago and was brought down to NC to foster. She had good hooves when she left NJ, and came back with the saddest looking feet I have ever seen. They say they shod her about a week ago (only front) but it scares me they even put nails through her feet. They are cracked, and pancaked and just look awful in every way. She is not lame, does not seem sore. Farrier is coming out tomorrow to assess. I have two not so fabulous pictures of her front that I will try to include (computer is being uncooperative) but I just wanted to get opinions on what I can do to help her along. I'm in NJ, very dry and sandy, no grass in our area. When it rains, it's muddy and wet sand. She was in grass in NC and her feet just fell apart to nothing. There are cracks from top to bottom in the hinds.
ALSO.....Does anybody have any tips for working her towards barefootnedness. This is the first horse I have ever had that has needed shoes. My first TB, and I would love to someday get her feet to the point where shoes are not needed. Again, any help is appreciated.
Thank you all in advance for input!

texasgal 08-04-2013 11:36 AM

Welcome to the forum! Lot's of folks here willing to give you their opinion.

We'd also love to see pics of the entire horse! *wink*

Again, welcome.

waresbear 08-04-2013 11:42 AM

384 Attachment(s)
Welcome to the forum. Unfortunately I can't tell too much about your horse's hooves from those pictures, however getting a better hoof starts with good nutrition and regular, proper farrier care. Good luck.
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princessfluffybritches 08-04-2013 12:30 PM

From the pics, it doesn't look that bad. For starters, she needs her toes backed up and her heels backed up to balance her hoof. Any good farrier would see that. If he trims her heels low, she may need a wedge to bring those heels up for the time being. I can't tell much more from those pics. And if they're pancaking, it may be because the last trim was quite a while back. Welcome, Megan!

Missy May 08-04-2013 01:01 PM

Welcome firstfed. First, it is wonderful that you adopted this girl - that is always pure "goodness". Second, I agree w fluffy - they don't look "that bad" from the limited photos. Hopefully you can get some good photos after the farrier comes and all the experts on here can go from there as to working toward barefoot. :)

FirstFed 08-04-2013 03:38 PM

4 Attachment(s)
Hello everybody! Thank you for the responses. I realize the photos were not terribly good. I got a few more today while I was out there. She came in late Thursday night and the farrier is coming to assess her tomorrow. I'm just horrified by her hooves. My barn mates seem to think that now that she's home and going back on a good feeding program and regular farrier work this will resolve easily (barn full of OTTB's, they're more experienced in this than I am. lol) I'm also a worry wart. :) Thank you all for the warm welcome. let me try these photos for a better idea of how they're looking. I've also added a picture of my lovely new girl. Post bath. lol
Thanks all!
And thank you again for the welcoming words!

Missy May 08-04-2013 03:54 PM

OMG. Well, you and your farrier have your work cut out for you. I hope one of the experts chimes in soon and gives you some sound advice for a plan. Clearly, it will take a lot of time and a reasoned plan.

Missy May 08-04-2013 03:59 PM

This is just, if it were me - I couldn't get those shoes off of her fast enough, get a good well thought out "first in a long series" trim, and some boots if necessary - and keep them spotless. I would prefer open air to those cracks, but...

coffinbone 08-04-2013 04:07 PM

Thank you for adopting her. You can see the pain in her eyes and in the way she's leaning back to take pressure off her toes in the first photos.

Horrendous. The shoe may be temporarily holding the hoof wall on (another hour, another day?) but the hoof wall looks mostly detached from the coffin bone. Infection may also be an issue. The ultra long toes and flared hoof walls are further pulling the hoof wall away from any attachment inside the hoof. Structure comes from inside.

Run, don't walk, and find the BEST, most knowledgeable hoof professional. She/he may not be close by but their travel-time charge will be worth it. Research and understand (for yourself) what the inside of that hoof looks like, take an anatomy clinic, do whatever it takes, then you can use your intuition on suggested treatments. Could take a year of really good work to grow a new hoof wall. Google and contact Jamie Jackson or Pete Ramey or another of the true, longtime professionals, send photos and get a recommendation. Many trimmers/farriers out there won't be able to handle this.

Poor dear girl. Thank you so much for rescuing her. I am heartsick.

FirstFed 08-04-2013 04:34 PM


Originally Posted by Missy May (Post 3254473)
This is just, if it were me - I couldn't get those shoes off of her fast enough, get a good well thought out "first in a long series" trim, and some boots if necessary - and keep them spotless. I would prefer open air to those cracks, but...

Missy when she got off the trailer and I got her into the barn in the light I actually asked my trainer if it was normal to put nails into feet like that. All the horses I've ever dealt with in the past were mostly ponies and draft crosses, so I rarely dealt with shod horses. This is a first for me and I could not for the life of me see how it would be logical to stick nails into a foot like that.

Coffinbone, thank you so much for the input. Our farrier has been dealing with broken down OTTB's for years, and he's very good. If he's unable to handle this he's also a saint about backing down and giving recommendations for someone who can. I am incredibly surprised she's not lame at all.
Let the games begin!
Thanks everyone for the input. I appreciate it. THere will be updates.

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