Little cracks in her hooves?
Today when I went to see Lacey I noticed that she seemed to be getting some little cracks in her left front hoof. I'm not really sure if it's something that needs my farrier's attention or what.
Here's a picture:
What do you think? It's been really cold and dry after being super wet and rainy for quite a while so I'm not surprised that her hooves are a little angry...
Those cracks, especially the one on the left, have been there for a little while at least. They didn't happen all that suddenly. They are from undue stress on the walls - is/has the horse been overdue for a trim? It's also usual for infection to go hand in hand with these type cracks, so treat for thrush too.
The last time she was overdue for a trim was in July/August-ish. She hadn't been trimmed all summer, and her feet were horrible. Could they be from that long ago? Since then I got a new farrier and Lacey's been trimmed at 4 weeks out from the first trim, then 6 weeks out from that since her feet hadn't grown much, and now it's been about 2 weeks post that 6 week trim. Her next trim is January 4...
She does apparently have thrush, I totally cannot see it and usually I can spot thrush but my farrier says it's there so I just started treating for it today.
wallaby-I've noticed she has rings in on her hoof. I'm not sure about the cracks but loosie is probably right. The rings in her hoof could be cause from poor circulation caused by chronic laminitis. This may not be the case but thats what I've heard about rings sometimes. This is best diagnosed by a good set of radiographs and with a veteriniarian experienced with laminitis situations. I just hope this is not the case though! I hope everything turns out to be just fine :)
I have been told about the rings. =/ According to most of the people who've seem them it just means she had a laminitic like episode or something like that, and hopefully not that she actually has had laminitis. The rings aren't as bad in the newer hoof so I'm hoping that they're right. She's never been "off" and her hooves look totally normal except for the rings so I'm hoping it's alright.
And over the summer she had some major hoof stress going on, she was shod (first time in probably over 5 years, if ever) and the shoes were left on from the end of June to the end of August. >.< But then I took over her farrier schedule and fixed that. They were on so long that she was actually lame from them, the only time I've seen her be lame. So I'm kinda hoping that it's just from that or something... =/
She was severely overweight for most of her life (like, the kind where you can see all the fat deposits and none of her true structure) so I wouldn't be surprised if she had foundered, I just really hope it's not true.
And even if she has, there's not really anything I can really do. My BO is pretty crazy and she doesn't get the whole "horses with founder need special care" deal. >.< As soon as I get financially stable, which I'm working on very hard, I'm gonna move Lacey asap and then life will be better, I hope.
Another possibility I've heard about. When a horse's hoof goes from wet to dry on a consistent basis such as daily then it can generate cracks on the hoof wall. Once those cracks begin to get to a certain depth they can harbor bacteria and such.
It's just something I've heard about and if you find it not to be other causes, you could look into it being the wet to dry conditions as a possibility or contributer.
I think I also remember that you wouldn't wanna take a knife and try to dig the cracks out to get to the bacteria. Doing said such things would only cause it to become worse. If I recall the best thing to do is soaks with acv to kill the bacteria. But to avoid the cracks would take quite a bit of effort. You would need to keep her hooves dry at all times. That is if it is from the consistent wet to dry conditions. I'm watching my dvd's, "under the horse", and pete mentions it in there. When I come across that part I'll remember to post what he says about it. It may be a few days though cus I just started over and I'm on dvd two.
Just a possibility to consider, cus I don't have the experience to say, "yup that's what it is". But it could be a multitude of things too, so I suppose it's good to know about all possibilities.
And I sppose only for a curious nature I have; has that crack on the left cracked all the way through the hoof wall at the toe?
A quick question to those with the experience. When a hoof forms a toe crack from excess pressure, does it start from ground level and work its way up the hoof wall?
Not trying to hijack the thread, but it's pertinent to wallaby/laceys hooves.
I was just looking at a picture from a week or so ago (when it was wetter) and those cracks are there, just less noticeable because her hoof was wet.
Here's the picture in case anyone wants to see it:
There's not really much I can do about keeping her hooves dry all the time since she is pasture kept and it does get really muddy where the horses are fed everyday... =/
So this isn't really something I should be worried about?
I'll start spraying the cracks with my 50% acv solution that I've been spraying her frogs with since she evidently has mild thrush in them... Is that about all I can and should do?
Looks like a surface crack - I'd mention it to a farrier when you get one out if it makes you nervous, but it's probably from the wet to dry. I'd just put some hoof dressing on them once or twice a day. Pine tar is great. Stinks to high heaven, but it does good things for moisture content.
LOL. That's why I was asking if cracks from pressure start from ground level and work their way up. I was looking through that thread with your trim critique and noticing that those cracks were in the middle of the hoof and hadn't grown to the ground yet. And so that caused me to think they were surface cracks. But that's why I was asking about stress cracks, cus I don't know for sure.
I haven't yet looked for the tips for these types of cracks, I've just arrived home from the mountain. But I'll take a look to see if I can find em quick.
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