Friday 29 July 2016

Zan's 2 week update

 Zan's feet haven't changed as dramatically as some horses, mostly because -  since he has been barefoot for some years - he already had a reasonably strong palmar hoof.
He was shod, as you can see, immediately before he arrived but that was a one-off which did not improve his lameness. 

As he already has a good heel first landing it is likely that the lameness is more related to medio-lateral balance than doors-palmar balance.
 If this is the case then I would expect the biggest changes to be in the balance of this foot, which is where the lameness was most evident. 
More on Zan soon...!

Wednesday 27 July 2016

Becca's first fortnight

Becca has now been here for 2 weeks so time for an update. She came here in remedial shoes and wedges. She is only at the very earliest stages of growing a better foot but I am pleased with how she has done so far.
She still has a lot of improvements to make in her palmar hoof but what I like about this shot is the way the foot looks more stable, particularly when you compare the angle of the hoof walls in shoes.
You can see how under-run her heels are and these are also very flat, shallow feet but that should change over the next few weeks. 

Friday 22 July 2016

2 and a half weeks

These are Lucy's updated photos since her arrival just over a fortnight ago. I will add her footage once I have uploaded it either later today or over the weekend.  
As is often the case, the most visually dramatic changes are in the solar shots. Bar shoes reduce sole stimulus almost completely so its not surprising that after a relatively short time out of shoes there are big changes. I wouldn't ask Lucy to do miles on tough terrain but she is already perfectly comfortable and capable for short periods.
 This is where most of the development needs to take place and its good to see some improvement already.
 From this angle the foot looks more collapsed at the back...
 ...but the photos from here tell a different story as the palmar hoof is clearly getting stronger. 
I am pleased with the changes Lucy has made so far and her footage is now up here:

Tuesday 19 July 2016

More new feet

These feet are new but not so new. They belong to Zan who first came here in 2011 with a range of issues, including thin soles, poor medio-lateral balance and under-run heels - a summary of his progress at the time is here:
He went home and did really well over the subsequent years, covering many miles and having many happy times with his owner Sarah.
Recently, however, he went lame on the RF - which was his problem foot back in 2011 as well. He was briefly shod, to see if shoes led to an improvement in the lameness (they didn't) and then came back down here.
What is great to see is that his feet are very much stronger and healthier than they were when I first met him and his landing is still heel first.
He does however seem to have lost his medio-lateral balance on the RF so that is, I suspect, what is responsible for his recent problem. I will of course post more on Zan over the next couple of weeks.

Friday 15 July 2016

Shoes as support

These feet belong to new horse Becca who arrived here yesterday. She was put into remedial shoes and wedged pads following a navicular diagnosis and was also given Tildren. 
Although these helped for a few months the lameness returned recently, which is why she has now come here.
The pads and shoes are trying to increase the profile of the back of her foot - giving "support" is the usual description.
The shoes mean her frog receives no direct stimulus and most of the load is taken on the rim of the foot, where the shoe sits. 
Out of the shoes and pads its a weak foot but it should soon be looking a lot healthier. 
I've posted before that I am dubious about shoes providing "support" - They have probably improved Becca's landing in the very short term, as she is landing flat at the moment, but they tend to weaken the palmar hoof at the same time.
By contrast, our objective over the next few weeks will be to rebuild the frog, digital cushion and heels as mush as possible and if we are successful with this then she should regain a better, heel first landing which will be a more long-lasting solution.