Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Columbo and the contracted heels

Columbo has been her for 4 weeks now so its time for an update. He is the big showjumper who arrived with very contracted heels and a persistent and long-standing RF lameness
As his RF is the worse foot it makes sense to concentrate on comparisons of that first. As always, his original photos are at the top and those from 4 weeks later are below. 
The most significant changes from this angle are the shorter toe and better hoof pastern axis but this angle doesn't really highlight the big problem with Columbo's palmar hoof...
...which is much more visible when you focus on frog and heels. Its the contraction of his frog  - far worse on this foot than his LF - which is the most serious problem as its also led to a weak digital cushion. Thats an issue for any horse but a real headache if you are over 18hh, bred to jump and need all the shock absorption you can get. 
Today his frog is slowly beginning to open out but we've got a long way to go before its a really functioning frog. This is also clear from his landing, which is now heel first on his LF but not yet on this foot. 
The deep cracks which were apparent in his central sulcus and at the sides of the frog are improving and his hoof wall is also considerably shorter, which is a good sign. Its also encouraging to see from this angle that the frog is now closer to the top of the heels - meaning its beginning to receive more ground stimulus and should continue to strengthen over the next few weeks. 
Of course there will be more on Columbo soon!

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