Tuesday, 10 June 2014

New boy Russell

New horse Russell made the long journey from Yorkshire yesterday but arrived looking extremely cheerful and ready to show us what he was made of. 

As usual with new horses, it was important to assess how he was landing and loading his feet and to see him move on straight lines and on the lunge so that we could establish how capable he was at day one and what we needed to improve. 
Russell is another long term barefoot horse and has pretty decent feet. On his initial photos, the only things which really jump out are the poor hoof pastern axis on his RF and his weak frogs and digital cushions, which affect both front feet. 
However the good news is that he is landing heel first though he does have a medio-lateral imbalance which is causing his RF to land laterally.
Even on this, his worse foot, there is lots to like and he certainly has a head start over many horses who come here. 
 The LF is the stronger looking foot but Russell  - in true pony fashion - doesn't like to make things too easy for us and actually has been lamer on this side that on the RF, even though his landing is better on this side.
The LF is certainly more symmetrical, except for the strange heel imbalance which is clear from this photo. 

Just to add to the confusion, he shows a clear muscle imbalance through his shoulders and hindquarters which are far more developed on the left side than the right...
Despite all this, Russell is capable of starting work straightaway and we will certainly have lots to work on, both in terms of straightness and of course his feet. More on him soon!

1 comment:

Pat van der Byl said...

Hi Nic,
This horse has been barefoot, and has a medio imbalance. How does one know when this is incorrect, or if in fact that is the foot he is trying to grow -to perhaps compensate for muscle problems higher up? (I presume he hasn't been recently trimmed badly causing an imbalanced foot).

Thanks, Pat