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So first winter 24/7. UK and clay here. So wet wet wet. 17 horses on 23 acres and only a handful of us poo pick. Cows get rotated in as well when we swap fields. 2mins from my house so I guess this is THE biggest downside. I mean the field is overgrazed (but does get rested and reseeded/tested by farmer as he breeds his cattle on his land). But it just means the mud has got to be gross. Because its her first time barefoot farrier said he wanted to leave as much frog as possible.. but she's a big girl. Any friction and then combined with shedding makes it a perfect breeding ground no? She's a big girl so the friction when we are out hasn't been helping. But I've not had to deal with scratches/mud fever or rain rot which is common here for some.

So the sulcus has gotten away from me despite my best efforts. My normal routines are picking feet twice a day very thoroughly. Disinfecting the pick between FEET! Washing and hand drying her frog and sole. I bought a platform so she can stand solid while out (4 hours a day) and then we go on walks down the concrete/gravel lane. I mean in practice it was just picking daily and washing 2x a week or if I felt needed. I would use salt soak if one got smelly. Use thrush buster and managed just fine. But then it snowed. And then the defrost. And oh my goodness what the banana has happened in the last three weeks?!!?!?!?!?!?!?

Well ALL FOUR ARE SMELLY. Changes: wet weather, increased temperature (13 celcius days) and spring grass - so loooots of sugar. When I compare to the grass growing elsewhere it is shocking. They must be consuming SO much even though the feel looks hogged. I'm up there early and late feeding her forage so she doesn't gorge as much. She's not getting fat at all though and I was hoping to exercise her more as I know it helps with insulin regulation + draught things. But her frogs are being rubbed raw by the heel/sulcus.

Options:




  • hoping someone can remind me of the product you use to gas the thrush baddies?
  • scoot boots (weather is drier now. they might provide some relief, easier to keep clean and have holes for ventilation). Could cram cotton in any cracks?
  • muzzle? She's not fat, she's not hyper or any more alert than she usually is. Is the sugar contributing to this? Or is it just because it's a gross field?
  • get farrier out but there isn't much growth and if he cleaned the frog up it would be to the point it's not on the ground.. which is what concerns him (hes active army farrier)
  • obviously would get a vet eventually before it turns into anything like I've seen other horses have

Ideas? I personally think its because its a gross field (fortunately with good drainage).
 

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Kal.... my mare has never suffered from thrush, but I’ve always had the impression that it’s caused by horses standing in their own waste, not mud. ( My mare has plenty of mud in her pasture come spring.)
I would recommend a product called “Banixx” if it’s available there. It’s a complete antimicrobial and the label says it works on thrush. Again, I’ve never dealt with thrush but Banixx has been an outstanding product for everything else I’ve needed for 🙂
 

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My horse has had chronic thrush, to some degree, for the entire time I've known her. I have finally gotten a handle on it!!!

It has less to do with cleanliness itself and more to do with the bacterial and fungal balance in the frog and sole. And because thrush is anaerobic, meaning it thrives where it has no exposure to air, wet and muddy condition exacerbate it because they block air flow to the area.

My coach (Elle's previous owner) swore by a 50/50 mix of iodine and clove oil. It helped, but the frog never seemed to fill in fully and the thrush always returned. What I've learned since, from some digging for info, is that the iodine is too harsh for the living tissue and slows the regrowth of the frog material. And because it kills the live tissue, it actually FEEDS the thrush even more over time. So you get into a vicious cycle. The same is true for most "potent" thrush treatments.

So, here's what I did instead.

The cheap home-made treatments:
Flush with 50/50 apple cider vinegar (the kind with the "mother") and allow to drain out
Pack with extra strength Desitin (zinc oxide diaper rash cream)

Later I upgraded to what I called "the big guns," which were the following products by Red Horse. They're quite expensive here, but because they're made in the UK, they might not be as bad where you are. They're antibacterial and antifungal, but with products that don't harm the live tissue and don't create resistance. They'll give the frog tissue a chance to fill in! The pressure created by packing well with the Artimud also helps stimulate growth.
Flush with Sole Cleanse
Pack with Artimud

I also changed Elle's vitamin/mineral balancer to Amino Trace+ by Mad Barn, which is the best rated balancer available in Canada when it comes to hoof health. It has a reputation for helping with chronic thrush, too. She also gets 1 tablespoon of salt in her feed twice a day, and has additional access to a salt lick in her stall. Sodium levels are also crucial to hoof health.

Now that we're having a lot of melt, and her frogs are thick and looking ready to shed, I've back off on the treatments because they're just going to be put on top of shedding tissue anyhow. But once she's shed her frogs and things dry up a bit again, I'll go back to the cheap home-made version of things as a maintenance thing, and only use the Red Horse products again if the thrush starts looking active.

In your case, because Katie lives out, you might want to go with the "cheap" versions of this as the Artimud wouldn't last as long. If you do the vinegar flush and pack with Desitin every day, you should see gradual improvement.

ETA: the following articles on the Pete Ramey Hoof Rehab website are super important and helpful reading material!! :)
 

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I use Thrushbuster.

You don't have to take her frogs totally off, but any flaps that you are able to pull off with your fingers should be pulled off IMO.
 
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And to add to my experience above, here's a pic of what her frogs looked like last summer, and one from January. The central sulcus splits were BAAAAAD. Persistence is key!! You have to keep treating, daily, with the right, gentle products, and they WILL improve. But you have to be committed for the long haul!

1111129
1111130
 

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A couple more things on rereading your post (I saw thrush and hopped straight in here like a big nerd):

I think the soaking product you're looking for to "gas" the baddies is White Lightning. It's especially good for white line disease, but it might be more trouble than its worth for central sulcus thrush. I mean, it would help, but you'd have to get a soaking boot, and doing every single foot is going to be a crazy amount of effort and time and expense and... yeah, I wouldn't want to go through all that when there are other methods.

Friction shouldn't be a problem. It should actually help. Frog stimulation by contact with the ground stimulates the tissue and is one important part of preventing thrush. It certainly shouldn't be messing up her central sulcus. I'm wondering if the appearance of "rubs" are actually part of the infection. Walking her on gravel, etc., and having her frogs get lots of stimulation on the ground is a good thing! It's possible that she has scratches low on her heels and it's giving that area a rubbed look. Also, frogs that are ready to shed this time of year just look awful, so what's happening underneath in the live tissue may not be as bad.

For the heels and "rubbed" looking areas, I'd wash and dry them thoroughly and put a thick layer of Desitin on there every day. It'll help heal things up and act as a barrier against the mud and poo and other grossness.
 

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Grand Circuit's "White Lightning" is one of the soak products that destroys the WLD organism.
Soak and fumigate each foot will take you much of a day to do it correctly..
It is the same organism is what I have been told for thrush and WLD just the host location is slightly different.
To soak will not hurt the horse nor their hoof structure/tissue...but may be a good preventative to consider if hoof splits occur to her feet when they get soft from constantly being wet/damp.

Otherwise I have had good results with ThrushBuster, a purple anti-fungal product that you apply and can pack the crack with cotton then infuse with purple liquid.
When where you also dribbled it along frog sides the purple staining wears away to a light shade is when retreat is needed, not daily even in wet conditions is what attracted me to the product cause it gets and stays wet ground here too during rainy season.
Something about Venetian oil {purple power} that makes the product work as it does.
ThrushBuster also does not kill all tissue only the infected organism tissue and bacteria.

I've also used Banixx on hooves, when a friends horse had scratches and rain rot...it dealt with all of them easily.
🐴...
 
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So first winter 24/7. UK and clay here. So wet wet wet.

17 horses on 23 acres and only a handful of us poo pick. Cows get rotated in as well when we swap fields. 2mins from my house so I guess this is THE biggest downside.

I mean the field is overgrazed (but does get rested and reseeded/tested by farmer as he breeds his cattle on his land).

But it just means the mud has got to be gross.


I personally think its because its a gross field (fortunately with good drainage)
^^^^You summed it the issue up:)

All that mud, good drainage or not, is STILL full of cow and horse manure, so even when the mud is gone you still have the anaerobic ”stuff“ in the dry dirt.

I wouldn’t bother with he simple go-to remedies like cider vinegar, etc as they probably won’t do a thing in the environment you describe.

1. I have never used Life’s Datta Clay but I have always hear great things about it, so I think Inmight try that first.


2. The dry cow (for mastitis) product called ToMorrow works very well down in the central sulci. It’s on the liquid side so I will cover it with a thick layer of diaper rash cream that is 40% zincs oxide.

It may not work in the extreme mud conditions you deal with however.

3. Up her Vitamin E. Buy a PURE and NATURAL Vitamin E. HorseTech sells pure, Natural Vitamin E 5000. I feed 3000 IU daily to my IR horse and my horse prone to Scratches and environmental allergies but you can feed up to 5000 IU.

Good luck getting this resolved as it sounds like the ground your horse lives on could make this a constant battle:(
 

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I would second packing the sulcus and any other holes that open up with Desitin. Get a plastic syringe if you don't wanna get your hands dirty and squeeze it in - it's pretty water resistant so if you're already picking twice a day, it should definitely form somewhat of a barrier in there.
 
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