Originally Posted by trIplEcrOwngIrl View Post
He stopped racing because he has OCD (osteochondritis dissecans),
Yes, 'popping splints' is unfortunately quite common, especially in punishing work for babies, such as racehorses. Where abouts is the OCD? Has he been operated on for it?
Okay, I will see if I can get my vet to come out. He had problems with swelling in his legs this past winter from standing and not getting enough excersise but that went away when the snow did and I could start riding again.
Yes, it's important to get them moving regularly, regardless of weather, if they don't do much on their own. Obviously if he's not moving due to pain tho, you won't generally want to force the issue....
He said that if I put hoof-flex or something similar that that would make his feet tougher as they are pretty weak right now. He doesn't have any more cracks or chips now though. He also said to get sole-freeze (I think that is what it was called) because his soles are thin and would get injured easily.
The hooflex or any other paint on goop won't make his feet tougher. They need to *grow* tougher. Diet and management are extremely important factors. Ensuring he's on a healthy low-carb, low sugar high fibre diet(as opposed to the high-octane stuff he's been fed as a racehorse), getting appropriate supplements to ensure nutrition is balanced is about the single most important step you can take IME to help him grow healthy feet. Dry, firm ground is best - or at least try to set up some time daily for his feet to dry out, if you're in wet environs - and free movement/regular exercise also helps them grow quicker/stronger.
Likewise, his soles need to *grow* strong & thick. Chemical hardeners can sometimes make a difference to how a horse *feels* on his thin soles, but if they're thin/dropped(quite common among TB types, especially intensively managed ones such as racers), they will need support & protection until they can grow better, if he's working on rough, hard ground, to protect him from bruising/abscessing of the solar corium. I would be looking at getting boots, at least for his front feet(backs often don't need it) for working/harsh ground, until his feet become healthy.
I haven't been to the barn today so I don't know if he is still sore but he wasn't lame, just tender. The other two weren't and the farrier said that he probably would be for a day but then he should be fine. I think he was suggesting shoes if he was still sore because that is what he was used to and the track and his feet aren't very tough.
I'm still not sure why he's sore/tender? If it's a post trim prob, it could possibly be due to how much had to come off because they were so overgrown or such, but generally speaking, post-trim soreness is often due to farrier error unfortunately. Even if so, I wouldn't necessarily jump to judging the farrier, as it may be that he's just done a tad too much for this particular horse at this particular time or such. But unfortunately a lot of farriers will routinely cause soreness because they trim into live sole, routinely pare frogs, etc. They also frequently leave stretched toes & flares without backing up/rolling, so the leverage on breakover can make the horse sensitive. So again, it's important to learn the principles for yourself, so you have a better idea of whether or not your 'expert' is actually as good as he reckons he is.
Regarding shoes, my personal opinion is that especially if his feet are unhealthy, shoes are not likely a good option(not dead against shoes btw), but as with everything, it's important to learn the pros & cons & principles & effects of the alternatives & make up your own mind, rather than relying on some 'expert' or otherwise opinion without being informed.
Anyway, hope that provides more food for thought for you & will look out for those pics. Cheers.