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Everything posted by bexDK

  1. If you read the thread up at the top about how to photograph and take the directed pictures of each hoof and the body shots for conformation, it will probably be easier for the more experienced people here to help you out. If you look at some of the other threads, you will see that the pictures really help and that you might luck out and get a pretty drawing back on the hooves to help you know what to do when you get to work on the hoof. Do you have tools for the trim? A good rasp (file) is essential and it helps to have a knife and a pair of clippers too. If you don't have a access to everything, tell us what you have and maybe someone can come up with temporary substitutes. But if you've just had the farrier out, a rasp and the curved knife for touching up sole, etc., is likely to be enough to get you started. Are you feeding him nothing at all or is he getting vitamin and mineral supplements? He is likely to need some of those at the very least to give his system enough to grow his hooves.
  2. Woops. said that wrong. The Sports are narrower than the Simples. Simples are equal in length and width. Sport slightly narrower than they are long. I forget the exact amount.
  3. I use the Cavallo Simples on my mare, which are similar to the sports but slightly narrower. Pads are no problem. Cavallo makes a thin gel pad. A lot fo people here in DK use the Easy Boot pads, but then you have to really think about how you cut them. I picked up a used pair with those that the previous owner had cut to EB's measurement lines--the shape is totally wrong for the Cavallos and they twisted and drove me crazy. If the thin Cavallo pads aren't enough, you can add something else cut to that size that you find suitable or use multiple pads. The biggest question is what size and shape are your horse's hooves? The different brands have different shapes and measurement schemes, so it is worthwhile to match your horse's measurements to all of them and see where you can get the best fit. With the Cavallos, my mare measured towards the middle of a Size 2. But I've since swapped the front pair out with a size 1. They're a tight fit, but the 2s twisted on her hooves. How's your horse's hoof shape? If you have underrun heels like my mare, you will find the wraps don't sit well. I switched to using old wool socks of mine. I cut them off a half inch to an inch below the sock's heel angling away so it was longer on the front. Then I put the sock's heel on her heel. The little bit underneath keeps the sock in place. I use really thin ones in the 1s up front (thick wouldn't fit but without it wore a groove in the front of her hoof). In the rear, I use thicker ones in the 2s. No pads in front and so far the annoying easy care pads in the rear but I need to swap that out with something else. But the thicker pads help tighten the fit. The Cavallos are shaped for a mustang roll. If the boot is on the big side it won't matter if you don't have it. But as tight a fit as I have in her front 1s now, she really needs it. The grip is good as long as I'm not on ice or wet moss or muddy roots. Since we have a lot of wet moss on slopes on our trails, we added small screws to the undersides--she was sliding some without. Cheaper than getting the studs (especially since I can't find places in the EU that carry them) but enough for my needs. I haven't tried in really icy conditions yet. She is also still fine on asphalt with the screws. Important to be sure they are enough shorter than the thickness of the rubber sole so they aren't anywhere near poking through. And we drilled a tiny guide hole so they went in straight and clean. Pretty sure we could take them out again without it being visible. The best is to find someone who will let you try theirs. Also remember to check for used boots. They're often way cheaper but have plenty of life left.
  4. Crack + Abcess = Big Problem

    I haven't posted here in a while, but I know this forum is filled with some really reliable people, so I hope I can get some advice on a big crisis. We've been doing our own hoof care for probably about 2 years now for a variety of reasons. The horse in question had serious problems when we started out with long toes, underrun heels, bad cracks, and poor hoof quality. Things still aren't right, but she is significantly improved. Our normal trim schedule is about every 2-3 weeks, because we find her heels run under and cracks worsen if it goes any longer. In the past year we've gotten down to only two cracks left and only one worrying me. Because of a number of family emergencies in the past month, she was last trimmed a couple weeks before Christmas so is a little overdue. In the very beginning of November, she was diagnosed by the vet with a probable hoof abcess in between this crack on right hind inside and her heel. We treated as directed by the vet with pain killers, antibiotics, and twice daily soaks. We didn't see any signs of an abcess breaking out, but the lameness passed and she has been sound for riding since, but we haven't ridden since a little before Christmas because of same family emergencies. Our weather is always very wet and has been worse than usual this year. Thrush is a constant problem for all Danish horse owners and we're doing what we can to treat it. Many of your recommended products are not available here. I can't even get triple antibiotic ointment to make ramey goo. Monday morning I was checking her hooves and noticed a problem (my husband has been doing the horse care otherwise but I filled in while he was sick. He knew she was overdue for her trim, but hadn't had the chance to do it yet). The crack had gotten suddenly and significantly worse. I picked up and cleaned up her foot to find a weakness in the sole, which to me looked like where an abcess had been, and the heel looking like it was folding out. I immediately grabbed the nippers and trimmed back what I could to try to get the weight off. But that revealed the problem to be even worse than I first realized, so I got my husband out to take some more of it. It initially looked like she was developing a toe on the inside of her right hind. It is hard to describe I didn't get picture. This horse is normally completely sound on pasture and sound and moving properly with a rider on everything except gravel. On gravel she slows down but still lands properly. She is normally ridden with front boots if we'll be doing more than just crossing an occasional gravel road and with both front and hind boots if we'll be riding primarily along the gravel roads. With front boots only she is completely sound on gravel, even at a jog. I am not trying to ride right now, but she does appear sound on pasture, regardless of whether the ground is frozen or the usual thawed mud. She also shows no pain reaction regardless of how we poke, prod, and press on the breaking piece and the rest of the sole or hoof wall. My concern at this point is that there is very little distance between the original crack at the quarter and the new crack developing at the rear inside of the frog. So I am afraid that if she gets much pressure on it, this entire triangle of hoof, including the right inside heel, will break off completely. More of the heel itself broke off when I was scrubbing the hoof to prep for the picture. Shoes are not an option for two reasons: there is no one in our area we could trust to shoe her and past experience has shown that her hooves are not good for holding shoes, especially in muddy conditions. We've done what we can to prevent the mud. So what we are considering is some kind of repair with Vettec Superfast or Adhere. These products we can get from a supplier here in the country. Other options are pretty limited and no one here has heard of casting, so that isn't an option either. What I am hoping for is some advice for how best to deal with this problem using things we can actually get in this country and if there is anything special we should do when trimming her. Our normal trim on this horse is to roll the toe, lift the quarters, pull the heels back, and try to correct balance. We're hoping to pick up the products tomorrow or Friday at the latest and to do the work latest on Saturday. We've never worked with any of this stuff before, but have studied several videos on youtube. I tried to study the sticky before taking pictures, but several of the pictures I took were worthless because the camera screwed up. I also am handicapped so crawling around on the ground is a challenge to begin with. Add to it that I am sick with a migraine and that my husband is sick right now and not up to crawling around either. I focused on the problematic hoof and several of the ones I took of the other hind ended up worthless because the of the problems. I retook some with my cell phone, but there were more messed up than I expected. But I hope these are enough to give a better idea of the problem. I put all the pics in a photobucket album: Here are the most relevant: And one of the left hind: Basic stats: 10 yr old Quarter Horse mare (registered) On pasture 24/7 with free access to a shelter Bedding in shelter is wood pellets and it is dry Fed with wrapped hay, hay, grass pellets, and some grain (barley and wheat and oats) in the winter when it is cold or she is exercised Supplemented with "Chevinal Plus" liquid mineral/vit supplement (should be pretty correct for danish soil conditions), "Hoof Aid" powdered biotin and hoof supplement, VSL selenium and E supplement (our area and where our feed comes from has notoriously low selenium levels), and whole flax seed Did I miss anything important? Thank you to all of you who got this far in this message and an even bigger thanks to those who offer some advice. I really appreciate it. I'd like to have her sound and safe for riding as soon as possible. I lose my ability to walk when I don't ride for too long. Sincerely, bex from Northern Denmark (I was born in the US, so no language barriers here)
  5. Crack + Abcess = Big Problem

    Sorry for the delay responding. I have been sick in bed all week. I haven't tried riding yet but on the pasture everything is going really well, despite a few days with hard frosts that had the other mares moving carefully in parts of the pasture. We had first talked about adding to the bottoms but there are several disadvantages to this: 1) No matter how much I scrub with tooth brush and soapy water, I just can't get the abcess damaged area completely clean. So if we add superfast to the bottom, we will be shutting in materials prone to infection that could easily get out of control without us being able to keep an eye on it or treat it. 2) We'd have to make an entire shoe to have her hoof balanced and this would make it impossible to keep on top of her trims. If we want this problem solved long term, she needs the constant trimming to get her bars under control, her heels and toes in place, and keep her balanced. 3) If we added the equivalent of a shoe to this hind, we'd have to do it to the other as well to keep her body balanced. So this would multiply the trimming challenges and concerns about thrush in the cracks. When she had a repair in 2007, she was cracked worse than this but the repair was significantly smaller. It didn't have the abcess and break-off-heel issue, but her walls were separating and the cracks went all the way up to the hair line. The patches then were little "bridges" over each crack more than half way up the hoof. They held--and held the cracks together--until they grew down to the ground and were trimmed off. At that time, she was initially in professional training for two months then ridden regularly without boots or shoes for a few months afterwards. I could saddle up myself back then so rode daily. And these patches held. With them being small and sticking out so far to the sides, they ought to have been more prone to breaking off than this patch. As far as importing casting materials, it isn't just a question of the purchase costs and shipping prices, which are really high. It isn't unusual for my family to pay more for shipping than for our christmas and birthday presents. You have to add 25% to the cost+shipping+customs percentage. I doubt I can get casting materials in at the low 3% for tack. It is likely to be more like 10-20%, depending on what customs considers it. The 25% tax is added AFTER the customs percentage. Then to all that, you need to add another 25-30 bucks in the handling fees for doing the customs. All this is assuming they even let the materials into the country. That isn't certain. If they aren't happy with it for some reason, they will just take the stuff and I get nothing back either. So it really isn't worth the hassle at this point. Especially since the casting would additionally leave me with more concerns about thrush. There is also a lot of fine sand in our soil. It can work its way through the wool socks I use instead of wraps in her boots. So it would be likely to find its way into the casting materials as well. If it lets water through for treatment, it would let the pasture moisture through as well. And probably not dry quite as quickly as the bare hoof. My husband checks her hoof every day. At any sign of weakness or trouble, we will expand or replace the patch or add to the bottom. Whatever it seems to need. We're taking a chance not covering the bottom, but considering everything, we think it is worth the risk right now. I will probably boot her for riding unless we plan to head to the sea or stick to the sandiest trails. Sand in the boots is no fun for anyone. The salt water tends to help combat thrush as well. I really appreciate the input and respect that you probably have more experience than we do. But we have to decide what we think is best for our horse long term. Thanks! Rebecca
  6. Crack + Abcess = Big Problem

    We did what we could today and I managed to snag a few pics along the way. I started out with a thorough scrub and trimmed the cracks clean as best I could. Then disinfected with an iodine solution and dried with hair dryer. It's been a couple years since she last encountered the hair dryer so she was a bit nervous at first. Initially I had the other horses in as well and they've never experienced that before, so they were freaking out and making her more upset. Once we got them outside, I was able to dry her the rest of the way. Decided to do Vettec Superfast patch first so we wouldn't risk making the cracks worse while trimming. Put her other hind up on the hoof stand to keep her standing firm and to make it easier to get to the inside. The hubby doesn't see what we'd been worried about. He found it very easy to work with. But he's used to working with caulk and silicon and stuff already and he found it worked pretty much the same. Put her foot on a plastic lid and a layer of plastic wrap to keep from gluing her down then used the plastic wrap to shape the patch and make sure there wasn't air left. Then while it cured we got to work on the other hind. Started with a marker and Missyclare's drawings. We'll need to work more on the bars. I think we got far enough back and didn't hit anything live this time. She isn't used to having her foot up so long and got pretty impatient. Idiot me forgot the sole pics of this foot. Then we tackled the problem foot. We mostly took off the outside and not much on the inside. Maybe we didn't take enough? The big concern my husband has now is that the frog is significantly lower than the hoof wall. Is this a problem? He usually tries to leave them pretty even but then we couldn't have taken anything off the heel. Again the bars still need more work. Both hooves need more rasping to finish it off properly as well as the continued work on the bars and weekly bevel touch-ups. Ria had had more than enough of standing around inside alone, we're both still sick, and his back just couldn't take anymore. So he had to postpone the finishing touches to the filing to tomorrow. After I took all the pictures, we took her outside onto the paved bike path along the road to check how she was moving. She showed no signs of discomfort, not even on the gravel road between the pasture and the path. Then he touched things up with the rasp until she walked straight with her legs. Unfortunately she will probably always be a little off since she'd been that way through her growing years before we got her. That's part of why she needs her trim touched up so often--she doesn't wear them evenly, especially on the fronts. So we're not really finished, but hopefully these pics can show whether we are on track so far. (BTW, I left the files large intentionally so anyone wanting to check something could better zoom in. Sorry the angles are a little off on them. I was so tired and she was getting impatient, which made me more nervous than usual crawling around under her). The white hoof is the right hind, the one with the remnants of an abcess. The dark is the left hind. The slight crack ont he left hind is definitely superficial and doesn't show any gapping when she shifts her weight. Whole album: Album of Ria's Hoof Part 2 Thanks again everyone for your help and support. I am much less worried now that things will go wrong for my mare and am even hopeful we might finally get her hoof problems really solved in the long term. Missyclare: We really appreciate the time you took to make those drawings. That made it all so much clearer and really made it easier for me to translate everything for my husband. Plus we could print them and take them out to the barn with us to help keep us on track. Final thought. I am thinking it is probably fine to ride her tomorrow as long as she still seems sound and doesn't show any discomfort with a rider on. Does this sound reasonable or do you think she needs some time off? The weather is supposed to be good again tomorrow but then we get nasty weather most of the week. So if I put it off, it'll be a week or more. Thinking just relaxed trail ride at the walk, stopping if she shows any discomfort, and trying to avoid gravel. Would she be better off with hind boots even though avoiding gravel? I usually only use the hinds when expecting to be on gravel a lot. And she did move well on gravel without a rider after her trim today. Better than she had a few weeks ago... Thanks again! Sincerely, Rebecca ps--And yes, I did treat thrush on all of them today. The dirt in their hooves was actually dry today because wind and frost have dried it out pretty well.
  7. Crack + Abcess = Big Problem

    Actually the goo I've made in the past is the same--mixing antibacterial cream with athlete's foot formula. At some point I also added some tea tree oil and that helped a little more. And I mixed in some yeast infection cream I had left over just to hit a broader range. I will have to try and see if I can stay on top of it more and try Sugardine if this doesn't cut it. It is challenging with my health problems. My husband kept wanting to do the blue powder, cotton, and tar treatment, but I kept holding him back for fear of damage. We don't know anyone with bees to get raw honey from. They aren't allowed to sell it normally. Something is different though in the Danish normal process for honey. Our regular honey is thicker and creamier than what I grew up with in the US. The hubby swears it isn't whipped. But if I keep struggling, I will try this honey. I have good syringe for applying goo. Couldn't find the really fine curved tip. It's a wider tip but with an angle on the end so it works pretty well. If we could just get a week of dry weather or frost, the thrush would clear up on its own until the next rainy spell. It usually does as soon as we get a little dry spell. Hers is worst and I figure it is because her hooves are so problematic to begin with. None of them had problems until the past two winters. Maybe it will be ebtter next year when they have access to the pasture we plowed and reseeded in the summer. That hadn't been done for a while. Switching to wood pellets in the shed a year ago made a huge difference in itself and we've added the extra drainage. We've also talked about adding a gravel patch, but usually we get enough frost in the winter that by November I can ride her on gravel without boots. The summer is worst, but the summer pasture is rented, so we can't modify it like that. And maybe if we get the toe back and her heels start growing right we can lose the boots year round anyway. The weather forecast is actually dry for the next few days, which is ideal for getting the vettec on to her. And with frost overnight Saturday and Sunday, which will keep it drier but add more stress to it. My husband studied the pictures now and adds his thanks as well. He has always been afraid to take too much off both at the toe and the bars. So tomorrow I will print them out and we'll get to work. Will probably wash and trim her then let her stand in for a while before doing the Vettec to give all of us a break and to dry her out. The hubby is tall and lanky so trimming this mare is hard on his back. Then we'll do the Vettec on the outside only (not under the heels) and let her stay in overnight. I know Missyclare's trim tips should leave her pretty well set without the vettec, but I am afraid to risk it with frost coming. It'll freeze up the mud into an obstacle course and she could easily land with that side only on a frozen bump and crack the whole thing off. Then once everything is settled, I'll have to see how comfortable she is to decide about riding. It'll only be trail at a walk, but I would rather end up in a wheelchair than make her uncomfortable. I will try to rephoto after it's all done, but it probably won't be tomorrow because I know I won't be up to the crawling around afterwards. And maybe in a few weeks I can shoot the other riding mare for a check-up. We'll also check her fronts again soon and see if the bars there need more cleaning up and to push the bevel a little more to get the toes back. Thanks again everyone. definitely feeling more confident about what we need to do!
  8. Crack + Abcess = Big Problem

    Thank you everyone. Casting products aren't available here. But we picked up the Vettec Superfast and necessary accessories yesterday. Our goal is to work on her tomorrow, both with the trim and the repair. The weird thing is that my husband takes the bars down on all our horses about every 14 days. Our weather is almost always wet and I guess that is why they tend to fold over and hold sole on all of them. So the hubby cycles through them routinely, trimming it out when they are in daily to eat. I've spent a lot of hours on here without saying anything, going through other people's posts and the pictures and a lot fo what I think to do matches Missyclare's drawings. The hard part is getting my husband's trim to match the pictures in my head. Because of my health issues, I can't manage much of the trim myself, beyond a little rasping and nipping. Missyclare: We can't take off that much of the toe without hitting live tissue. That's been our delay with this mare. Both rolling the toe and digging out the bars is what we normally do. So we take it back until it shows pink or what? Our normal cycle is about every 3 weeks for her, with the bevel touched up int he middle. But we csn increase the touch-up frequency. I will print out your pics for the hubby to study and take them to the barn with us. But except for taking the bevel all the way back to the side of the heels and the toe coming back through live tissue, he feels like it matches his normal procedure What happened right now to screw up the normal schedule is that my father-in-law died on new year's day. So my husband has been forced to minimalize some of usual routines with the horses so he could help his mother. It just unfortunately coincided with that abcess growing down at the same time as everything else in our life went wrong. :-( But that is also why the bevels on her rears aren't maintained and why the bars have gotten out of control again.He trimmed her fronts yesterday but we wanted advice before starting on the rears. The main quarter crack has been there the entire time we have had this mare. I intensively treated the cracks for thrush this summer and the earlier fall and the crack on the other foot is clearly growing together. This one has been more problematic and then with the abcess on top... Koppertox isn't available here. White Lightning isn't available here. The majority of thrush products discussed aren't available here. We've tried spraying daily with vinegar with no visible difference (except the smell gave me migraines and the hubby couldn't keep his barn clothes in the house because they always smelled of it). The main treatment here is a blue powder that I'm pretty sure is the usual copper component of most thrush meds. Normal treatment is to pack it into the cracks, cover with cotton, and "glue" the cotton in with tar. But that method destroys a good bit of healthy tissue as well, so we try to avoid it (and won't work on the side crack). The vet recommended a solution of it in a spray bottle and that is slightly more effective than vinegar but not much. The real problem is the environment. Abnormally wet summer followed by abnormally wet winter. Their summer pasture was unusable most of the year due to flooding. Last year we had the area around the shed and where we usually have hay dug up and added a lot of rubble to improve drainage and to raise the height. It has helped, but as wet as this year has been, nothing works. We've also tried treating thrush with as close as we can get to ramey goo (no antibiotic ointment in this country.. just antibacterial) and with tea tree. Contemplating trying sugardine but the opinions seem very mixed about how damaging it is. But that is also the case with all the copper-based meds too. Ria had underrun heels when I got her in 2006. Her hooves were in a pretty appalling state and she also had the quarter cracks on the rear. We used professional farriers for a while but the problems just worsened. she did once have some kind of epoxy put on to hold the cracks together on the rear. We tried shoes but she couldn't keep them on (and the farrier was a jerk). So what I've been contemplating is if it is possible that her heels are so damaged from all those years that we'll never get her standing up properly. We've probably tried everything except building them up artificially. I've also talked to some of the new trained barefoot trimmers over here and they had no ideas to offer (actually their trims resemble pasture trims more than what we do already, so not worth the fortune to get one of them out...). So there's the other question. I am confident we should use superfast on the outside of the hoof to keep it from breaking off (there is maybe a cm left between those cracks). Not covering all of it, but some strips to connect the weak part but leaving much of the crack open to the air (I am terrified of shutting in thrush-like bacteria and growing a worse problem). Also planning to rinse the crack with iodine before putting the epoxy on to try to kill anything that might be in there. But where we are most uncertain is underneath. It occurred to us that if we took the heels way down then put on a little superfast, it might prevent the heels from rolling under like they usually do within a week a two (so he takes a couple swipes with the rasp on her heels regularly), so maybe she could finally grow out some heel. But I am also afraid of blocking out where the abcess was. It was filled with dirt and such before I scrubbed her for the pics. So I really need advice on what is best. Also whether we should do the heels on the other hoof as well while we are at it. I'm also back and forth about whether we should cover the cracks with modeling clay so we end up with "bridges"... it looks like most treatments we've found online do not do that. If we did, the area blocked out would probably end up packed solid with mud daily, so that leaves us tending to letting it seal up but try to leave it open farther down so any infection that did develop from something closed in could drain downwards. There is no heat in the hoof and no soreness. She also doesn't smell thrushy, not even the stuff I dug out of the abcess hole. We figure she needs to come in out of the mud for a few hours before we start and we'll use a hair dry to dry her out before applying. Then she will spend the rest of the day and the night inside so it can cure thoroughly before she hits the mud again.That should also be good to dry out the thrush some as well. Hopefully I have made sense. I am still migrained and picked up my husband's infection as well, so am not very functional today. But we really appreciate the responses and especially the drawings and comments on vettec. If i didn't mention it already, we can't get casting materials, so that isn't an option. Thanks! Rebecca
  9. Crack + Abcess = Big Problem

    Thank you Greenhaven. I did think of a few details I forgot. Ria is ca. 148 cm tall at the withers (around 14.5 hands). We don't know her exact weight. Last we weighed our two riding mares together they were ca. 1150 kg. The other riding mare is a paint that stands around 160cm, so she is over half of the weight. But that was in the early fall when they were in better riding condition. Ria's hooves are comparatively small. The fronts just fit into Cavallo Simple size 1 as long as we keep the toe rolled. The rears take 2s but the boots are a bit loose even with wraps and thick pads. According to measurements, both sets were well in the 2 range, but they twisted and rubbed on the fronts. Her front hooves are about equal in width and length. The rear are obviously a bit longer than they are wide. I have noted measurements from some time much longer in the past and if I remember right, she was over a cm narrower than she is now and the diff between width and length was 4cm!! So we are really going from quite horrifying problems to what we have now. Our other riding mare is barefoot and sound in all terrain, including riding over gravel, etc. And our younger paint has even better hooves. All are strugglign with thrush right now but the others don't have the chronic problems this one has. And all are on similar feed, same supplements, water, pasture, etc. Only difference with the feed is that the other two get more grain and less grass pellets than Ria because they need it and she doesn't. The youngest has only had two trims by others. The riding paint was slightly long toed and underrun when we took over but it fixed very quickly. Ria was in bad shape when we bought her and it got worse for a while with the farriers we used. She has had some type of epoxy repairs once in the past that worked well, but it was done at by a trainer's farrier at her place and isn't within a reasonable distance of us.
  10. Atypical Laminitis

    Our paint mare (not at ALL overweight and with good quality hooves) was diagnosed with what translates to atypical laminitis/founder on Sunday. She didn't have all the normal symptoms of founder. And it wasn't a typical founder situation... we'd brought the horses back from the summer pasture to their home pasture because of a storm forecast. They'd been on the summer pasture for a little over a week, so there wasn't much grass on the winter pasture. They have straw mixed with some hay to supplement and we were adding some feed, primarily grass pellets. A small amount of grain. The usual vit/min supplements. NO molasses, no sweet feeds. She'd had the same the day before without problems. Towards the end of feeding, we noticed something was wrong with the paint. She was pulling her rear end in under her and not acting right. She'd eaten fine. We got the horses out and she was still not right. Kept looking at her stomach and acting like she wanted to lie down. Stomach sounds were minimal, so we assumed colic and got her walking. She wasn't very happy about it, but that isn't unusual for colic. It took a couple hours for the vet to get to us... not our usual, just the one who was on call. Shortly before the vet arrived, we were starting to wonder about founder. She was trying to eat, which didn't seem much like colic, and was stiff-legged when led over gravel. She was landing heel first on firm pasture even in the worst of it. So vet did a thorough exam and diagnosed an atypical founder, said she's seen a lot of it lately (4 cases herself like this in the week before). The mare only reacted on the one front foot and hasn't had the heat and pulse typical of founder. Vet didn't know if there would be any impact on her hooves. She's getting something for pain/inflammation and we've got her restricted to a small pasture that is mostly sand. The limited diet already has her losing more weight than she has to spare. She was just right Friday and is now getting a little thin. We've started feeding small portions of grass pellets to try to keep weight on her, but we're very nervous. Even with more than 40 years experience with horses, my husband has never had one founder. We do our own trimming now and there aren't any barefoot trimmers around here. So we don't have anywhere else to turn for advice except here and our usual vet, who would go with " traditional" treatments if necessary. What do we need to watch out for in her hooves and pay attention to? It sounded like the vet thought it unlikely that she would have any problems, but what should we watch for? What would be the signs we would see in her movement or hooves that meant somethign had gone wrong? I was out to check on her earlier and she definitely has a heel-first landing on all four feet. She's moving normally right now, but I don't know how much of that is the meds she gets every morning and how much is just not having further symptoms. We have meds until Saturday morning.
  11. Is My Farrier Putting Me Off?

    The wife may be checking his messages and getting back to customers while he is out of town and it may be that she isn't very good at it or very comfortable with it, so trying to cover her mix up to keep from losing you as a customer.
  12. Atypical Laminitis

    The vet said to give straw. The whole point was to avoid nutritional value. It is simply to occupy her and her stomach and to spread out the hay so she doesn't get as much of it. We're also to limit her feed intake, although we have slowly started giving her the grass pellets to try to keep weight on her. Horses need to eat constantly. We've been unable to get decent hay at the end of this season--our usual supplier, who promised to have plenty for us the entire season (we'd reserved in early spring and he'd never failed us before) DIDN'T have it, only some very moldy and dusty stuff left (probably at least 5 yrs old), and no one else has had to spare because of the unusually hard winter. So we were forced to go with bales of straw that are about 1/3 to 1/2 hay. The hay in that case is a good quality, no dust or mold. So we'd been upping the feed and increasing the number of feedings to keep them fit with the straw/hay ad libitum to keep them occupied and feeling good. Hay is late this year, so we can't get any new stuff either. The majority of our grass (and everyone's hay fields) was also destroyed by the snow. It delayed the usual growth of the summer pasture and has limited hwat has come in on the winter pasture. Right now the foundered mare and my quarter for companionship are on what is primarily a sand pasture with some of the grazed-down-grass along the edges. No signs of further problems. We don't have much choice on where to put her. It is either the same pasture, now with a dividing fence to cut down the space and leave them the softest part, or over on the very lush grass with the other two. Fromw hat the vet said, the very lush grass would be a very bad idea. If she were a more "typical" founder horse, we'd be having no problems because she'd have plenty of weight to lose. But she's not. She's a very fit paint and not one that gets fat on nothing like my Quarter, who was fine on the same pasture, along with the younger paint and the old Oldenburg. The best guess as to cause is the unusually cold winter and spring increasing the amount of sugar in the grass, but odd that it is this mare and not the heavier Quarter that foundered. Also odd that they'd been on that pasture for 48 hours before it happened and had been on that pasture 8 days earlier and receiving much more feed to supplement without problems. But this doesn't answer my actual question--what do we watch out for with her hooves? My husband says she is a little stiffer and more sensitive in the morning before she gets the med. But whenever I see her, she is moving pretty normally and with heel-first landings on the firmer part of the pasture (beyond the sandy area). She isn't happy about having feet lifted, which is probably a sign that she is still some sore. We had them up to check thrush, which is mostly gone, and treat what was left. She hadn't been ridden in over a week and hadn't been on asphalt or rock and she isn't the type to do a lot of kicking. So concussion-related founder is unlikely. Her trim is well-balanced and she was moving well the day before. The vet was also considering something I don't know how to translate (kidney-related, usually hits after overexertion or improper cooling down), but that didn't make sense because she ahdn't been worked. Hard to know whether there might eb anything poisonous out there, but we haven't seen anything. There are a few plants local to our area that we always watch out for. She didn't have the swelling that would indicate snake bite... this is the mare that has had a poisonous snake bite in the past. Our shetland pony stallion is on a similarly grazed-down pasture and is also fine with no signs of problems. But he has enough for himself, so hasn't been supplemented with any type of feed. Our other shetlands are on a good pasture and also doing fine. So this is one very odd occurrence, though apparently common in the area right now and common to be atypical of the usual laminitis symptoms, and we're doing our best to care for her and follow vet directions. This is why I am asking about what to keep an eye on in the hooves so we know whether there are long-term consequences that will need to be managed. I haven't gotten too much research done on barefoot management techniques, but so far it looks like we'd mainly be needing to boot or cast for comfort and to keep the walls short so the pressure is off until things grow together. But beyond seeing if she shows signs of soreness, how do we know if we need to do anything? My husband had trimmed her fronts a few days before this happened. So right now her bevel is good, her quarters are up, and she was moving properly after the trim without any signs of soreness. We've never had a problem with post-trim soreness in any of our horses. Thanks for trying to help! I really appreciate it.
  13. I Need A Lift Up

    Maybe Dr. Teskey could recommend a good trimmer in your area? Might be worth asking. Good luck getting your horse sound again. Definitely scary for things to go that badly after a trim.
  14. What Does Barefoot Theory Imply About Breeding?

    Missyclare, can you give me more details on the P3 issue you mention with old style quarters? I am pretty sure mine would qualify as such and she's the one that we've been struggling to get really long toes under control on.
  15. Farriers' Bad, Bad Business Skills

    It's just as bad over here on the other side of the pond. This is also why we do it ourselves now. Although we still have to improve our skills, all our horses are moving better and have better looking hooves than they've ever had before. To resolve your immediate problem, what about calling around to local larger facilities and asking what farrier they use and if it might be possible for you to trailer your horses in and piggyback on their appointments? We were willing to trailer our most problematic mare an hour and a half for trims (and would have paid the farrier for the drive otherwise and had all three done) only to get a callback a few weeks into trying to set something up that he was "no longer doing other peoples horses". Then we have the guy who insisted shoeing was the only option on the mare, had seen the pasture conditions and poor hoof quality in advance, cancelled the appoitnment the day he was to shoe more than 2 hours after he was due (he had problems with the gas and HADNT MADE THE SHOE YET!), quicked her (pounded a nail in so it hurt) and both denied it and hit the mare for yanking her foot from him the day he finally did show... then as he left said "keep her out of the mud..." which he knew in advance was impossible in our situation. Shoes didn't hold 48 hours and he couldn't care less. He also charged an arm and a leg. I guess it was to make me pay for the 30-40 hoof nails that he threw haphazardly around the area where he worked, which he knew was our carport. He insisted on a covered area to work even when the sun was shining and the weather was gorgeous and htere was better light outside. If the weather were bad, it would make sense, but in great weather? That guy was recommended by the farrier the vets recommended, who wasn't interested in new customers, even when we had 4 horses. We had used someone else for a while, but he just wasn't good enough. Long toes and underrun heels and nothing done to control it. Not even telling us there was a problem... No one else services our area. Most people around here either use the guy who didn't do it well enough, the guy who won't take new customers, or the jerk that is never coming near my horse again. Except for a little while after the jerk, especially with that one back leg, my mare is VERY good for trimming and shoeing. She stands still, lifts her feet nicely, and doesn't shift her weight around.
  16. Cinch Idea's For A Childs Saddle

    just put a regular tie strap on both sides instead of an off-billet that might be too short and use a regular western girth. then you can have the length you need. you could make a converter easily. the ring off an old girth (or buy one in that size) on a piece of leather with two straps for buckling into the english girth. Or just remove the buckles and put on an western one.
  17. For Those Of You That Use Grazing Muzzles

    My grazing muzzle is primarily held on by velcro and all the connections are plastic. Both are quite likely to open easily if something happens. Still amazed the other horses leave her be with it. We have one that tends to destroy everything.
  18. Equicast

    If your trimmer wants to use him as a guinea pig to experiment with a new product, it shouldn't cost you anything. Might that be what the trimmer was suggestion? Have you tried asking your trimmer these questions? Probably the best way to find out what the trimmer is thinking. Then you can compare that with what other-people-who-have-never-seen-your-horse think.
  19. Spurs

    If your instructor is confident that you have the calmness and control in your legs, you should have no problems. Spurs can actually be used extremely lightly if you can control your legs well. Just take it slow and easy and you'll be fine. When you get nervous, take a few deep breaths and relax. Your nerves are probably more upsetting for your horse than the spurs themselves. Sounds like you have a good gentle set, so just take it easy. If you tense up too much, you're more likely to tense the muscles in your legs, making them uneasy and more prone to accidental spur jabs. My own goal when riding with spurs is to work to use the lightest signal possible, which often means I don't use the spurs at all or barely touch my mare with them. My legs are quiet when I ride, but I can't give a good strong kick because of health issues. So instead I use the spurs gently and can add a little more if really needed. It gives me the control I need without pain. Your big thing will be getting a feel of "I'm using the spurs" vs. "I'm not using the spurs" -- it's usually a slight turn in the foot/ankle that amkes the difference. Once you've got that, you can just relax.
  20. Rosie's Hooves Again

    I am probably not much help, but a few comments just in case. We've been seeing major improvement in my mare lately.. with just a few minor changes in the trim. The bevels that we weren't doing before have let her move better, but more than that, we started clearing out the splatted bars and that's the biggest difference. All that old sole has been clearing out since. Her feet used to look pretty flat, but they don't any more. We're seeing big improvement in the concavity. But do be prepared for more frequent trims to be needed. It seems like in 2-3 weeks she's got a lot of hoof above sole again. We're sometimes taking the bars in between as they get looking splatted again, but theyre settling on that point now as well. That old sole... we scrape some out with the pick sometimes. it ends up seeming like soap... like if I took a pocketknife and carved up a bar of soap. That's how the old stuff acts in our case at least. Some it might be be similar on Rosie. What I'm trying to say is that even if it is hard work, I think you will find a great deal of improvement very quickly with just that minor change. But you're doing great and she looks great. Try to keep your courage and confidence up. Lots of mixed opinions on some things--trust yourself and your horse when making decisions. No one knows Rosie as well as you do. No one else can do as good a job evaluating what she needs and what does or doesn't work for her. No one else has to live with the consequences of the decisions, but you do. Are you strip grazing? That might help... cut down how much "fresh" pasture they have access to at a time and slowly move the boundary. Our summer pasture is cut up into about 5 pieces, but some have to be open when others are to allow access and access to the water, but it does help, both with maintaining the supply and with limiting so they don't pig out as much initially. We also have 4 on the pasture to share the bounty. And tonight Ria gets the grazing muzzle on. She dislikes it, but not major hysteria. She'll be mad tonight, but in a couple days, she'll have settled to the routine like she did last year.
  21. Getting Worse

    The problem worsening with time does sound like saddle could be contributing. Whether because the fit is an issue or because there is a different physical problem aggravated by the rider's weight or the saddle or whatever. Yes, I saw you said the problem still happens when riding bareback. Not all horses are comfortable being ridden bareback. Your seat bones might be hitting wrong and hard. It might be something else. My own mare isa build you'd think would be fine with bareback, but she's not. For a case like this, my own personal checklist would be: 1) Saddle and tack fit. thorough check for anything. Palpate the horse thoroughly for signs of discomfort. 2) Vet for a thorough exam including teeth. Do whatever the vet recommends if the cost is worth it for you. 3) A competent trainer if all fit and health issues have been ruled out. 4) Send the horse to slaughter or have it put down. I wouldn't sell a horse with that kind of problem for the horse's own sake. Good luck making a decision that you can live with.
  22. Rosie's Hooves Again

    Have you considered a grazing muzzle for part of the day to help limit Rosie's grazing but keep her out and about? We're going to put Ria's on something this week. Have decided for her to have it on at night and off during the day. You have my sympathies with the pasture. Similar here.... we are primarily sand and grass and many of the paths we ride are sand. Ria is now sound walking with a rider on gravel and that's the max of my expectations. Mostly just need to cross one once in a while and stick to the edges as much as possible when riding to keep her comfortable.
  23. Barefoot And Thrush/fugus

    Oddly enough, at least one of our horses has an iron deficiency significant enough to warrant supplementing... the old girl that we had a blood test done on. I am contemplating pushing the hubby to feed with beet pulp next year because she tends to refuse to eat the supplement. Our summer pasture finally got nice, so we're off feed for now. WR: so glad to hear Rosie is so much improved. Your hard work has paid off. Ours are also much improved, but we've had rain, so I need to keep an eye on things. The summer pasture is low, so often stays wet longer. But we needed the rain, so no complaints.
  24. Sore Back

    Was he being ridden when the problem developed? If so, it is probably a saddle fit problem. If the pain started when he wasn't being ridden, I'd go straight to the vet.
  25. Barefoot And Thrush/fugus

    what i have stuck in my head and cant find anything on with a quick google was something about high iron with beet pulp. if i remember correctly, you are having iron issues already. hopefully i am just dreaming this or mixing something up, but that's the idea i had in my head. it is probably just my head being nonfunctional, which wouldnt be anything new.