Gallery

Updated In January 2021

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This shows the different in posture over the course of a few months. You can see in the top image, the front limbs are very camped under. In the bottom image, the legs are perpendicular to the ground. When the horse's legs are not standing square (like a table) they are having to use muscles that aren't typically required for stabilization. Over time, this can create compensation problems throughout the body, including the hooves! The horse is wearing epona shoes with dental impression material as packing in the bottom image.

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Turning oval feet into round feet is one of my favorite things to do!! Long toes wreak havoc on the hooves and ultimately, the body. When the toes are too long, the hoof must lift off the ground too soon in locomotion, causing it to come down too soon, usually causing the horse to land on its toe. Long toes can also cause proprioceptive issues, making the horse think that it is standing on a hill, causing them to stand camped under. An oval hoof also does not distribute weight evenly on the hoof when standing, unlike a round hoof. You can see once the toes are brought back the heels widen, the frog becomes more robust, and eventually this will positively affect posture and movement! Also, be advised that the foot on the right is not thrushy, but it was simply a very muddy day that day. Mud in Georgia, can you believe it?! (sarcasm)

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When I first started trimming this horse in May, the owner and I were commenting what wonderful feet her horse had. When I took pictures of it, I wondered what would happen to this foot over time, because it already seemed so healthy! I was happy to see a very happy foot become even happier. The frog and heels became wider, the foot became even more round, appears more balanced, and the white line connection became tighter.

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Pictured here is a miniature horse who had foundered and was unable to receive hoof care for several months. We did not have radiographs, but indicators on the hoof led me to hypothesize that this horse had "sunk", meaning the coffin bone was deep down inside the capsule, rather than this just being a "long foot" that could be trimmed to the correct proportions in one or two trims. This horse is moving around much more comfortably now!

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I was called to start working on this horse in August. He had been diagnosed with a pretty bad case of white line disease and his previous farrier did the wall resection, as shown in the top left image. You can see in the top right image, he was also chronically abscessing. We did a diet overhaul, put the horse in cloud boots for comfort, and we were able to grow out a healthy hoof capsule!

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In the top left image, note the dorsal wall crack that is about halfway up the hoof capsule. This is a club foot, and at our first appointment, I began picking out and packing the seedy toe crack and then packing it with Red Horse's "Hoof Stuff". This horse did not undergo a diet change, nor did the owner treat this crack between appointments. This grew out simply from the "Hoof Stuff" that I applied at each appointment, as well as a consistent 5 week hoof schedule.

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I attribute these cracks growing out massively to Vermont Blend supplement. I'm still crossing my fingers that that last crack will continue to grow out!

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I was called in to work on posture specifically with this horse. The owner said the horse consistently stood like the image on the top. By June, she said he was standing square more often than not. In the image below, I will show the changes that occurred in his hooves in that short time frame.

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In the top right image, not the "bullnosing" of the hoof wall. There is a convex curve to the wall when looked at the from the side. This is typically indicative of low coffin bone angles. Also note his hairline towards his heels, how abruptly it turns down towards the ground. With trimming alone (no diet changes, body work, dentistry, etc.) we were able to lose the bullnosing in only two trims, as well as develop a more robust frog. We gained heel height, and gathered in the flares. It's amazing how small changes such as this can affect big things, like posture!

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This image clearly shows what I look for when assessing foot falls. This horse has a navicular diagnosis. A common symptom of navicular syndrome is caudal (heel) hoof pain. Therefore, we often see exaggerated toe first landings on horses like this. So what's the big deal? Why do we care where the horse lands on his hoof? The back of the hoof contains the frog and digital cushion; this area is perfect for shock absorption. The toe is rigid, and consistent toe first landings can sustain damage to the internal structures, including remodeling the coffin bone. This horse resonded very well to EponaShoes with dental impression material for packing. Eponas are composite shoes that add stability and vertical height while allowing expansion and contraction of the heels, which traditional shoes do not.