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TOPIC: Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot

Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 20 Jul 2010 22:13 #1

  • Peters Shoeing
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A new client wants his 16 y/o ex-racer to stay barefoot. He told me the retiree is sore and experiences some lameness after work, etc. He wanted me out for a trim ONLY. Ya know, one of those. I evaluated the situation and though there were no real apparent signs of Navicular with a hoof tester in the frog area, even in comparing hind feet to fore feet reactions, I still believed something was up or beginning to unfold. I recommended bar shoes and a vet consult, but it was a no-go. So, I trimmed as I would for a possible Navicular case, standard stuff.

I followed up and the retiree was doing good, just sore after work. Again, I recommend therapeutic shoes. A couple weeks pass and now the horse is really lame. I am pretty sure we are now dealing with a possible tendon issue, especially from working a horse who needs shoes. Suggestions?
Alan Peters
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 20 Jul 2010 23:27 #2

  • Lori McBride
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Are you thinking navicular disease or maybe just syndrome? If it is true navicular, w/o a shoeing package, wouldn't it be expected to become more and more lame? I haven't had allot of experience with true navicular. I do have some on my books that have been "diagnosed" with navicular disease with just some hoof testers and a look from the local farm vet. ;-) I worked on one today that had been diagnosed with navicular (years previous) has been sound for years and then came up lame a few days ago. All that seemed to be the problem was a stone bruise and heels way too stacked. :)
He wanted me out for a trim ONLY. Ya know, one of those.

I have been having similar problems. Lately I have adopted something that a veteran farrier I know does: he presents a good, better, best scenario. Works pretty good when presented the right way. I have been able to do what the horse needs, might not be the absolute best, but it walks off better that it walked up. So in my books a win. :-) But what do you do about people who you are afraid will give you a bad reputation by association? I mean the ones who:
-go 10-12 weeks between trims (when they should be every 6)
-wear easy boots to DRIVE :rolleyes:
-or when a shoeing protocol is recommended they refuse?

I know that we are in a service industry, and I realize that the owner is the boss, so what do I do? Some of these people are pretty good to work for, (the ones who wait too long between trims of course, get charged premium rates) I don't want to cut them from my books, it pays the bills. But do you all think it could be hurting my business in the long run? Probably a **** question.....:rolleyes: :)

Good luck Peter!! I know you will get some good advise from these guys.


Lori McBride
McBride Horseshoeing
Lori McBride CF
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Don't follow where the path may lead...........go where there is no path and leave a trail.
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 21 Jul 2010 02:23 #3

  • Jay Mickle
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Peters Shoeing wrote:
A new client wants his 16 y/o ex-racer to stay barefoot. He told me the retiree is sore and experiences some lameness after work, etc.
Doesn't sound retired.

Peters Shoeing wrote:
He wanted me out for a trim ONLY. Ya know, one of those.
One of what?
Peters Shoeing wrote:
I evaluated the situation and though there were no real apparent signs of Navicular with a hoof tester in the frog area, even in comparing hind feet to fore feet reactions, I still believed something was up or beginning to unfold. I recommended bar shoes and a vet consult, but it was a no-go.
Why would he consult a vet you already prescribed a shoe for ????
Peters Shoeing wrote:
So, I trimmed as I would for a possible Navicular case, standard stuff.
Not sure I know what a navicular trim is. Care to expound?
Peters Shoeing wrote:
I followed up and the retiree was doing good, just sore after work. Again, I recommend therapeutic shoes.
Something other than bar shoes this time? For what malady?
Peters Shoeing wrote:
A couple weeks pass and now the horse is really lame. I am pretty sure we are now dealing with a possible tendon issue, especially from working a horse who needs shoes. Suggestions?
Care to explain the tendon/sore hoof connection and how you came to that conclusion?

Look for simple solutions first, like maybe the horse just needs a pair of shoes from being foot sore from over work. You needn't diagnose every lameness issue you learned in school on one horse.
Jay Mickle
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 21 Jul 2010 03:39 #4

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Horse is a retired racer, but he rides the horse here and there. Moderate work load, but probably too much for a barefoot ex-racer. I suspected Navicular syndrome, but could not verify it fully. I recommended bar shoes.

The owner favors "natural barefoot trimming". I'm sure you have possibly dealt with this. Lori does. ;)

I mis-sequenced it. Long day. I suggested a vet once the owner reported the lameness, which is not what I saw when I was there.

I might not be hearing the whole story. The horse may be worked harder than he let on, may have suffered an injury, may have a previous injury that flared up during over-working, etc. At first, He told me the horse was doing well, but sore after working. I expected this much as I did tell him that I believed shoes would provide for protection. Weeks later and the horse is experiencing lameness of a greater degree. This description makes me feel that a vet might be an option.

Ahh dissection of semantics. Therapuetic shoes as in bar shoes. Didn't mean to imply to a navicular trim, just attention to possible navicular. More bevel on the toe. I lowered the heel and backed up the toe to move back the point of breakover, to relieve some leverage on the Navicular Bone.

Never said sore hoof. I just think we should first rule out a Deep Flexor Tendon problem or arthritis. I am the second third farrier this guy has gone through on this case. He seems to jump around, maybe is looking for someone to fix everything with a barefoot trim. I do want to go for a simple solution, believe me, I just want to do the right thing.
Alan Peters
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 21 Jul 2010 03:42 #5

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Well anyhow, I do appreciate your advice. I honestly feel that shoes are needed here and maybe an injury resulted from over-work without shoes.
Alan Peters
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 21 Jul 2010 03:51 #6

  • Clint Burrell
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Peters Shoeing wrote:
The owner favors "natural barefoot trimming".

I am the second third farrier this guy has gone through on this case.

He seems to jump around, maybe is looking for someone to fix everything with a barefoot trim. .

Trim the horse, sell the owner a big can of Vennice turps, a couple bottles of Dura Sole, some 7% iodine(if you can get your hands on it,and get good money for it), and trim the horse(increasing your fee each time you go there) untill the owner fires you or you get fed up and quit.;):cool:
Clint Burrell

"You say your from collage,
but you don't seem to bright.
You just brought a swichblade
to a pistol fight"
Move On by Chris Knight
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 21 Jul 2010 05:58 #7

  • Peters Shoeing
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Ahahaa. Sidenote, Where do you get your 7% I from?
Alan Peters
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 21 Jul 2010 17:57 #8

  • Clint Burrell
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Peters Shoeing wrote:
Ahahaa. Sidenote, Where do you get your 7% I from?

From the "big" bottle I have.;) I use it spareingly.
Clint Burrell

"You say your from collage,
but you don't seem to bright.
You just brought a swichblade
to a pistol fight"
Move On by Chris Knight
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 22 Jul 2010 02:48 #9

  • solidrockshoer
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Peters Shoeing wrote:
Ahahaa. Sidenote, Where do you get your 7% I from?

get to know a dairy farmer. most have a 55gal drum sitting in the pump room in the parlor.

from my experience alot of runners that have had any kind of extended career are hard to get to go barefoot. ymmv.
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 25 Jul 2010 18:01 #10

  • mwmyersdvm
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According to Dr. James Rooney, who did post mortems on hundreds of racing Thoroughbreds, navicular disease is practically a nonentity in the race horse. Crushed digital cushions and negative palmar angles along with thin soles, underrun heels, and serious wall flares are quite common. These horses can sometimes be rehabbed barefoot, but 'rehab' means just that - weekly trims and no work, proper diet and physical therapy. Putting you in the position of having to repair a horse this owner wants to put into even light work with no down time to repair the damage done at the track is very unfair to you. If this is not a valued client, put your foot down and say you will not continue to work on this horse without properly positioned radiographs so you can see where everything is and make a determination what best to do. If there is no veterinarian there to read them, then refer the case to someone with specialty experience. You may wind up with an owner bad mouthing you when it is definitely not true. However, this won't matter to those he reports his woes to as you will not be present to defend yourself.

M. W. Myers, D.V.M.
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 25 Jul 2010 20:43 #11

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Couple questions....

After being worked where is he lame?

Couple weeks later he was more lame, where?

Since you hoof tested the frog, I'd imagine you ran the tester around the entire foot and since you didn't mention the foot being sore......... ???

If I get a call like this I test the foot, try to figure out where the horse may be lame. If it's not something obvious I tell them to call the vet.
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 26 Jul 2010 03:00 #12

  • Peters Shoeing
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Yea, I really should have discontinued servicing this client for my own sanity. It was bothering me so much, I wanted to do right by the owner and the horse, but I have to pick my battles.

The story gets more ridiculous.

To rewind, Owner said he wanted a trim only for his barefoot horse, but the ex-racer has a lot of problems, probably Navicular syndrome among other issues. He asks me to check.

I did not detect any true Navicular signs at the time, I tested the frog and checked for soft spots on the sole. Nothing noticeable. Still, I knew this horse's history and that he was being used for riding and the horse has had bouts of lameness before, so I suggest shoes. The answer was no.

I followed up with him, maybe that was my mistake. I usually like to follow-up with clients, but this one may have opened the flood gates. :rolleyes: He says the horse is doing really great a week later. I'm happy, he's happy. I will still mention shoes next time because I believe he over-works the horse. Time will tell.

Then, few days later, I get an email; the ex-racer has lameness and pain in his hock area. This sounds unrelated to my services, but I said I would come out in a week when I am in the area to look the guy over.

Then, a few days later his horse is sore in two feet.
Hmm, ok, it's been about 2 weeks since I trimmed and I did a very conservative sole-paring, I detailed what I did with the heels, just as I had as I was doing the trim. I offered to come out, see the horse, and even wrap the 2 hooves in Magic Cushion. Maybe that was another mistake.

That same day, the next email said the horse was now sore in all 4 hooves and he was sore the entire time. ***? The email goes on to accuse me and ask what I did, etc. Ok now, the story is changing with every email. I recommend shoes and I discuss possible problems and reasons shoes would help. I also recommend radiographs and a vet consult. I offered again to wrap the feet and re-do the Navicular test, all free of charge.

He emails me back saying his neighbor is a farrier and he put shoes on the horse and the horse is back to normal. He has never seen the horse experience that kind of soreness before. I realize my services are no longer needed. It's sad. This is one of those horses that just can't go Barefoot and the owner still can't own up to it. I offered everything I can think of, short of offering free shoes. I think the owner was seeing how far he could take it. It drove me nuts.

How should I have handled this? Could I have handled it differently?
Alan Peters
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 26 Jul 2010 03:06 #13

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true "navicular" isant seen that often in racehorses. alot of vets used to diagnose alot of other issues as navicular
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RE:Navicular case, no rads, client wants barefoot 26 Jul 2010 04:02 #14

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Let's just say this is my first unhappy client in a while and he didnt take my advice of shoes, rads, or vet, but what can you do? It took all of this to put shoes on and in turn, lose a client.

I think that any real problem could only be displayed in rads because I saw nothing obvious aside from a possible overworked ex-athlete. Like I said, I saw no evidence of navicular.

I guess my advice could have been more firm, but ya know, can't force them if they dont want it. They will just find someone else who will do the trim without the shoeing-talk until they have to get shoes put on.:mad:
Alan Peters
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