This is a slightly belated Beanie update but better late than never. I thought it would be interesting to start off with some comparison shots of him standing, as he was particularly wonky on day 1. The left hand photo is then; the right hand photo is today. Not perfect by any any means, but improving, which is the important thing!
Beanie arrived having been lame for a long time - a matter of years rather than months. His feet had begun to improve after he came out of shoes 6 months before he came here and it was our job to continue the improvements and try and bring him back into work.
Clearly the biggest change is in the strength of his palmar hoof but there is also a fairly steep new angle growing in which will bring his toe much further back - easier to see where I've marked it in red. You can see that his hoof/pastern axis will also be more correct once this new hoof capsule is in place.
There is an argument for trimming his dorsal wall back to where the "new" breakover wants to be and many hoofcare practitioners would do this. It would certainly make the hoof look prettier and since its where his breakover will be in future, what would be the harm in that?
Probably nothing in a horse with a robust palmar hoof but for Beanie - like most of our rehabs - palmar hoof pain was one of his main problems and backing up a toe will automatically put more weight onto the palmar hoof. That's fine for some horses, but for Beanie it would be too much too soon and would almost certainly make him lamer, not sounder.
On arrival (above) Beanie had weak, thin soles which were quite prone to bruising, and he had needed hoof boots to keep him comfortable on hard ground.
Now I am glad to say he has begun to build a much more concave foot (as you can see from the new collateral groove depth). His frog is much more substantial at the back but the shorter toe (drawn in on the dorsal wall above) is not yet evident from a solar view - although he has already begun to break over in line with where his toe will be when the new hoof has grown in.
He has made great progress in strengthening his heels, frog and digital cushion already and its important to be patient and let him continue to improve at his own pace without setting him back by changing his foot balance faster than he can cope with.
His movement is already improving, even on a hard surface, and you can see from these stills that the better stride length is not just in front but behind as well. An interesting illustration of how lameness usually has an effect on all four limbs.