Starting off right?
As promised, I have pictures of horse feet for your review. His shoes were pulled and he was trimmed on Monday, so this is six days after. I have not ridden him since before his feet were done due to my own health issue, but he is sound and happy as ever. I have never touched my horse's feet with a rasp before today, but figured I ought to smooth off the edges where he's already been breaking off hoof wall at least. Aside from that, what, if anything, should I do? More pictures live here: Equine Photos by SharpieBird | Photobucket
All done (for today)
I think you did a really nice job rolling the edges. That should help a lot. Be sure to get symmetry in the hoof thickness from side to side, and don't take more than 1/2 the thickness of the wall. My concern is that the photos make the heels look like they're uneven. I would check and make sure whether they are. Also, the LH and RH look like they are trimmed at different angles. It doesn't appear that they need to be (sometimes it's appropriate due to confirmation). I would check that as well. It looks like all the walls were left too long, and you seem to have corrected that with your roll. If you have, don't roll the heel area.
There is always some distortion in pictures. That's why I say check those things.
I rode a little today in the arena- he was sound barefoot tonight. Hopefully I'll be feeling up to doing more soon and we'll see what our 'starting point' is for his feet and any sensitivity there may be. Looking at the pictures, his frogs seem so tiny. I'm sure part of that is from them being trimmed, though I wonder how much is from being shod long term.
Hoof work is hard physical work! How to farriers do this all day?! I think I should rasp back to where the dirty gap was on the quarters of each hoof since that's where there were bits of separation and he was breaking off the hoof wall anyway. Half the wall depth would be for the areas where it is all healthy and not stretched, right? I was surprised that in just 5 days he had already chipped bits off of 3 out of 4 feet.
I was surprised he stood so well and patiently for me. Not that he's bad for the farrier at all, but I thought he might get impatient with my fumbling about.
it appears that there is a lot more that can come off, and your horse is self trimming. Use your hoof knife and trim the edge of the sole at both quarters until you see shiny smooth sole. Like make a window to see where it is. Do the same around top half of the frog. If quite a bit comes off, clean the hoof to live sole. Rasp the walls until you see the white line (yellow). Then roll the outer edge, but not past half the thickness of the wall. This will remove all that stuff that chips away. Don't rasp the heels to the white (yellow) line. You may need slightly higher heels at this time to keep a positive angle.
I'm sure others can chime in with more help.
I was comparing this set of pictures to others in my photobucket from our prior farrier and it made me sad to see how much his frogs have narrowed/shrunk over time. What is it about shoes or farrier style that does that?
I did a bit more today (sorry, no pics), mostly just making sure that everything was evened and smoothed out from where I got tired. I was working off of the advice from Untitled Document with regards to rasping the quarters, where he tends to flare and chip using their recommendations. After spending a little more time and looking closely to make sure I identified the white line and inner and outer hoof wall and rolling the edges based on that rather than just what was left after his trim, his feet look a bit less oddly shaped than initially.
I don't have a hoof knife yet, and I'm kind of scared to do anything with his heels. :oops: I don't want to make him sore! As of now he is sound in pasture and in our arena and field, but a little sensitive/cautious over gravel. I expected that and think the 'correct' thing here is to just give him some time and keep exercising and riding on surfaces he is comfortable on, right? I certainly don't expect him to be a rock crusher in just seven days after three years of shoes, but I am pleased that he seems so comfortable otherwise.
When a horse is shod he's not engaging the frog like he does when barefoot.
No time now, quick note... Don't carve the frogs unnecessarily! You want them to grow thick & strong. Leave it to grow & callus. Only remove any 'overhangs' & diseased or flappy bits.
As there are only afters of direct-on sole shots, it's hard to evaluate. Can't tell depth/height, can't tell bevelling or 'rolling'... It appears the heels maybe could come down some generally, and toes backed. Except that right hind. The 'bullnose' & angles worry me a bit. As his left hind is so different, a little too sloping, from average, I wonder also what may be going on upstairs.
like previously stated the frog narrows when shod being that the frog is not used as it should be. The frog is just like the pad of a dogs foot. Its purpose is to obsorbe part of the impact of the horse coming down on the hoof. It also acts as a mini heart being that it pumps blood around the hoof. Developing a good healthy frog will lead to a good healthy hoof. The sole should only be exfoliated to the live "waxy" sole for initial mapping to determine the the angels and dimensions to fit the confirmation of the horse. After that you should let the sole grow and calus. and then you will be only trimming the hoof wall. The frog will shed and need the edges cleaned now and again, and the sole will need minor exfoliating here and there. But over time the sole should become hard, and the frog should become thick and wide. That is all taken directly from a wild mustangs hoof. They have they healthiest feet, and they are not trimmed. The hoof wall needs to be trimmed as domestic horses generally do not run as many miles a day wearing them down. over exfoliating of the sole also leads to weaker frogs, being that the hoof is concerned about preserving its self and will grow more sole quicker. start leaving the sole alone and it will grow less. It will grow to where it needs to be and stop growing. thus leaving the hoof to focus on the frog. put a good role on the outer wall and grow your way to a stronger healther hoof, that will be hard to bruise, and will also leave less work for you.
I see here toes stretched way forward and too much heel on the foot. Both will contract and possibly stretch the frog.
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