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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

I was wondering what your opinions are on this:

My horse definitely has coffin bone rotation with a ton of remodeling. I’m attaching a hand-drawn picture of what the x-ray looked like. (Will post it later when I receive it from the vet.)

I believe it was @Hondo who gave me an article about how its helpful to DROP the heel on horses with flared hoof fronts, to get the front hoof wall to grow more normally.

However, the vet has been talking about heel LIFTS to make her more comfortable and to counteract the bone remodeling.

So which is one supposed to do? Lift the heel or drop it?

Frankly, /DROPPING the heel seems like it would make more sense, as even with the naked eye., I can see she walks too much on her toe.

I think the farrier would rather just trim her normally, using casts or boots to make her comfortable, and let dietary changes work to make most of the difference.

So what say you—horsey people? Drop the heel, lift the heel, or trim + hoof protection (watch and wait) while addressing the horse’s diet?
 

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The general recommendation for shoeing intervention in horses with rotation is to use a heart bar to protect and support the sole of the foot to reduce risk of the pedal/coffin bone coming through it.
If you don’t want to shoe then you need to use some other means of protecting and supporting the hoof.

The Laminitis Site suggest that no more than 1cm should be taken from the heel in one trim
They have a lot of useful information on there so worth checking it out.
 

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I haven't had this problem, yet, thankfully. But I wanted to recommend that you buy "The Essential Hoof Book." Someone here recommended it, and it is great. It's a dense book with lots of information, and it benefits from multiple readings. But it will give you a thorough explanation of all aspects of hooves, hoof problems, hoof care, and yes issues around laminitis. Being on a small island you probably don't have a lot of choice in farriers, and you may need to be prepared to advocate for your horse. This book will give you the foundation for doing so.
 

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If you could post pics & the rads it would be helpful. The ground surface of p3 should be not too far off ground parallel - raised caudal about 3-5 degrees - in a well balanced foot. If p3 has been allowed to 'rotate' significantly then returning it *gradually* to this angle, having the bony column aligned is a vital part of rehab.

BUT if there is too much chronic damage to joints, for eg articular ringbone, then it may be that the foot has effectively fused in that form, that rehab is not possible & therefore palliative only methods are all that can be done. In that case, leaving the angles as-is and just protecting & supporting the sole & frog(I disagree that rigid heartbreaking & rim shoes do this) may be best.

I am not familiar with the idea of further raising the heels of a horse with chronic 'rotation' & 'ski tip' remodeling. However, with early acute laminitis - as in, when the horse is seriously lame & inflamed - it was thought, before we had better understanding, that the DDFT would pull the bone away from the dorsal wall and this is what caused 'rotation' & separation. Therefore immediately raising heels to 'relieve' the ddft was considered important first aid. I believe many vets still advise this.

Raising heels is still a common thing for palliative management of 'navicular'(until recent decades this was thought incurable so palliative was all they did), as they have found raising the heels reduces discomfort... for a time. When it stops working, raising them high, etc... until it no longer works, at which point the horse may be given a neurectomy as the 'last ditch' palliative measure.
 

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The horse's natural balance dictates where the heel height is. If you don't know how to natural balance, not merely hoof map, yes don't go to drastic, it's above your skill level.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The horse's natural balance dictates where the heel height is. If you don't know how to natural balance, not merely hoof map, yes don't go to drastic, it's above your skill level.
Luckily the vet and farrier talked and came to an agreement. I think the farrier is going to put her in padded clogs designed to give her maximum cushion, in order to get back as much circulation as possible.

Dont think they are actually going to raise or lower the heel after all. Just cushion and support.
 

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Yeah, from the rad, looks like she could do with having the heels lowered a bit - but wouldn't want to say just from that rad. But more importantly, the toe sole is VERY thin - heels may be fine but front of the foot needs to be 'raised' a bit instead. At any rate, padding under the front of the sole at least would be beneficial.

Yeah, can't really 'map' those feet accurately, without understanding how much the 'ski tip' will mean the 'breakover point' needs to be further forward.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yeah, from the rad, looks like she could do with having the heels lowered a bit - but wouldn't want to say just from that rad. But more importantly, the toe sole is VERY thin - heels may be fine but front of the foot needs to be 'raised' a bit instead. At any rate, padding under the front of the sole at least would be beneficial.

Yeah, can't really 'map' those feet accurately, without understanding how much the 'ski tip' will mean the 'breakover point' needs to be further forward.
Yeah, the fronts of both hooves are so thin that just thumb pressure is enough to elicit a pain response. And she’s been this way for years. Poor girl.
 

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I was surprised to read in your first post that this horse puts more weight on her toe as typically horses with rotation don’t want to put weight on their toe because it’s too painful for them.
They usually adopt the ‘set back’ stance to put weight on their heels for that reason. When they walk and land toe first they quickly flip the hoof over to remove the pressure to the heel but on the whole they prefer to put their weight on the heel all the time which results in the heel area wearing down and the toe getting longer and longer.
 

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I know that the equine podiatrist on Horse Vet Corner has a very high opinion of these shoes for helping chronic laminitis cases. Might be worth having a read and seeing if they might be an option.

NANRIC - When and How to Use the Full Rocker Motion Shoe

This might not be the exact shoe, but this idea:

Aluminum Full Rocker Shoe - FR1CC (Each)

EDIT: There's also this shoe, which she recommends depending on the severity.

http://www.nanric.com/catalog/horseshoes/plastic/nanric-ultimate-pair

And a good general read:

http://www.nanric.com/the_mechanica...mBIO-0frR6nrkXgUqmV80todQS2YZx73ECl8gMfG9i63o
 
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