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SpaceBubbles 10-30-2013 07:56 PM

Walking toe-first ?
 
Hi my horse is a QHxSH 11yo gelding. I have had him for over a year now and have always thought he had a stiff and short stride. However I've been looking a bit more closely and have noticed that he walks with his toes hitting the ground before the heel. It has not lessened his performance or his "go".
He is a solid boy, standing at 15.1hh, but has a reasonably narrow chest, which was the previous owners thoughts for the short stride.
He has also stood a bit parked out since we have got him, and since the previous owners have had him, but many people have told me that its just his conformation.
Any opinions are appreciated (hoping that people will say that I'm just overreacting haha) and hoping that it's nothing too serious...
But I have heard that particular shoes can correct his "toe first" issue.

**We have always had him shod, but was bare with previous owners.

DancingArabian 10-30-2013 07:58 PM

That's something your vet should look at followed by your farrier. It could just be bad conformation but it could also be something like navicular that needs management.
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Kayella 10-30-2013 08:19 PM

Toe first landing can lead to navicular /remodeling, so it's definitely not something to scoff about. If he's landing toe first, that usually means he's got heel pain. I would make sure his toes are brought back to where they should be and his heels are not underrun.

Shoes are not the route I would go to fix this issue. I know either a shoe with a wedge would be used, or a rocker shoe to ease breakover could be used as well.

Can you post pictures of his feet?
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Patty Stiller 10-30-2013 09:46 PM

A consistent toe first landing indicates that either the horse is subtly lame now, or will be in the future, due to the internal stresses results of the toe landing. A constant toe first landing is *almost always* due to incorrect hoof trimming and break-over whether in shoes or not.

In toe first horses,(and stumbling horses) the "footprint" (the bottom of the foot, or the shoe) are almost always longer in front of the widest part of the sole and shorter behind. The CORRECT ratios for the bottom of the foot in a healthy foot around the widest part are at least 50%-50% front and behind,or even better in may feet, more behind and less in front. Almost all horses who are landing toe first have ratios reversed with more in front and less behind it is almost always doe to inadequate heel trimming, and stretched toes.

NO particular shoe will correct it if the foot is not trimmed right to begin with. Therefore in most cases what is needed is a different TRIM and HOW the shoe is set on the bottom of the foot.
Certain shoes make this a lot easier but any shoe can work if it is modified and set thew right way, onto the right trim.

For information on hoof mapping to recognize the distortions in the hoof please go to Equine Lameness Prevention Organization and begin reading. Also go to Hoofcare Today - Hoofcare Today and watch all the short free TV video clips that are listed on the left side of that homepage. You will learn a LOT. and its free.

loosie 10-31-2013 01:01 AM

Patty has pretty much said what I would have. Except to (perhaps)clarify...

Quote:

A constant toe first landing is *almost always* due to incorrect hoof trimming and break-over
Hmm I'll have to take more notice of that, for any horses I see who are *constantly* toe first. I do find that most horses I see on first visit are toe first and long in the toe, just haven't... collated the statistics!

But so many horses, living in soft, rich pasture, have such weak heels & regardless of trimming will go toe first on hard, rough ground. Protection in the form of pads/boots tends to do the trick, as well as helping the horse build heel strength, by *comfortably* using them.

Re the 'parking out' I would call that postural rather than conformational. It's possible it could be to do with his feet, but thinking it's more likely a body issue - not that I'm a bodyworker BTW. I would consider asking a vet chiro or such about it.

princessfluffybritches 10-31-2013 11:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by loosie (Post 3994018)
Patty has pretty much said what I would have. Except to (perhaps)clarify...



Hmm I'll have to take more notice of that, for any horses I see who are *constantly* toe first. I do find that most horses I see on first visit are toe first and long in the toe, just haven't... collated the statistics!

But so many horses, living in soft, rich pasture, have such weak heels & regardless of trimming will go toe first on hard, rough ground. Protection in the form of pads/boots tends to do the trick, as well as helping the horse build heel strength, by *comfortably* using them.

Re the 'parking out' I would call that postural rather than conformational. It's possible it could be to do with his feet, but thinking it's more likely a body issue - not that I'm a bodyworker BTW. I would consider asking a vet chiro or such about it.


Mine walks toe first when I lead her. Not riding. But , like Loosie said , she's in soft pasture or sand.

Patty Stiller 11-03-2013 11:10 AM

Quote:

Re the 'parking out' I would call that postural rather than conformational. It's possible it could be to do with his feet, but thinking it's more likely a body issue - not that I'm a bodyworker BTW. I would consider asking a vet chiro or such about it.
It is nearly always postural. and nearly always due to the feet. The horse finds the place to put his feet that makes him the most comfortable Parking out the forefeet (or standing under with the hind feet) relieves the leverage in a long toe, aligns a broken back" misalignment of the coffin joint, and reduces the tension in deep flexor tendon.

Just the opposite, a horse with too tall heels will stand with the forefeet back .
I can change the posture in a half hour by balancing the feet correctly. I have done it many times.

loosie 11-03-2013 06:44 PM

Quote:

Parking out the forefeet (or standing under with the hind feet)
Was thinking of the term parking out to mean more hind feet back.

Patty Stiller 11-04-2013 06:51 PM

Quote:

Was thinking of the term parking out to mean more hind feet back.
OOOOH..... that, I find is usually due to some kind of back pain.

princessfluffybritches 11-04-2013 08:26 PM

With toe first caused by confirmation, which type of confirmation is the most prone to toe first?


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