Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Isla's 2-and-a-bit week update

Isla will have been here 3 weeks on Thursday and as Steve was with me at the weekend it was an ideal time to get lots of new footage, so her update is going to be a bit early. 
Here are her feet the day she arrived. She'd been out of shoes a couple of months but was landing toe first in front and on the lateral edge of her LF.
 She'd had issues with a splint on this leg too, which with hindsight was probably related to her landing in this unbalanced way. No dramatic changes yet but the foot is more symmetrical and her frog, though tatty, is starting to look healthier. The ridge of sole round the frog is a sign of  a weak foot but I expect that will disappear pretty quickly.
Watch the palmar hoof, because that's where we need the biggest changes to occur...

Isla is beginning to engage the back of her foot more but its far from established at the moment. Still, as the old saying goes, every little helps!

Again, the development at the back of the hoof is what we want to be seeing. Isla is landing heel first on easy surfaces but her landing on a flat, hard surface is still only intermittently heel first.  
Nevertheless, after less than 3 weeks that's good progress and her medio-lateral balance is improving too, so there should be lots more to come.
This is her footage, and you can see that though she sometimes lands well, its not established. In the footage of her coming towards the camera, its easier to see as her toe is more often than not the last part of the foot to touch the ground, unlike when she arrived. 

2 comments:

Julia Ironside said...

Hi Nic, I follow your blogs avidly as I've decided to try and transition my horse to barefoot. My farrier identified that my mare landed on the lateral edge of her right fore and tried to correct this with shoeing. What I'm a little confused about is whether horses land on the lateral edge due to pain or due to conformation and biomechanics? My mare has had lameness issues this year which resulted in a referral to Newmarket equine hospital where knee pathology was diagnosed in the right foreleg (the same one as the lateral landing) and this was operated on. She's now well on the road to recovery but I have wondered if the knee problem and the lateral landing could be linked, the Newmarket vets have said that the cause of the knee pathology was her confirmation as she is a bit 'over at the knee' on that leg. I seem to be questioning a lot of things the more I read and learn about the benefits of barefoot!

Nic Barker said...

Hi Julie, the horses here are fairly readily able to change their lateral landing once they have a more balanced foot but often the landing starts due to a conformation issue further up the limb. The best place to compensate IME is the hoof as the limb is less dynamic once the horse is an adult.

Of course lateral landing also leads to pain as it stresses collateral ligaments and other soft tissue.