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TOPIC: Asymmetrical front feet

Asymmetrical front feet 04 Dec 2009 00:27 #1

Looking for suggestions on this horse. She is a team roping horse, the fastest of three owned by this client. In the pics you can see that the lateral half of her foot is wider than the medial half. The white line is fairly tight all the way around with virtually no flaring showing on the solar surface. We have had her in shoes for the past two summers for traction while roping. She has always been sound. The medial side is turning under somewhat. Wondering if there is something I can do to make these feet more symmetrical or should we be happy with what we have. I have thought of shoeing her with a little wider medial side shoe to encourage this side to spread out a little. Not sure if this would give us what we want. What do you all think.....

Before trim.....

[/IMG]

Lateral view after trim

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Medial view after trim

[/IMG]

Somewhat sheared medial heel

[/IMG]
Patrick Ards
Clearhills Farrier Services
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 04 Dec 2009 00:30 #2

Solar view before trim complete..... can only post 4 pics at a time. Thanks for taking a look....

[/IMG]
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 04 Dec 2009 10:15 #3

  • cynthia-jay
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sheared heels can be painfull/ she shows red at the toe area as well/appears to have a touch of high/low syndrome

good strong, short pasterns

what you have is jamming from repetition
it happens in other disaplines a well

sooner or later it will manifest in regards to issues/ringbone comes to mind on this particular horse

I would suggest X-rays in regards to this horse

if you are a "brave soul" forego the film and level her up/check the rears as well

explain to the owner/ she may improve her speed/ she may be off a bit untill she adjusts

usually a bar shoe is used for stabilization depends on how you address it

they can go a while like this, then lameness may follow

your best bet is to bring the hoof back into balance:)

Cynthia Jay
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 04 Dec 2009 11:47 #4

  • vthorseshoe
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Patrick;
I am going to take a stab at your questions and give you my impression. (little that I know)

1. You have had this horse in shoe's for two years.
Yet look at the stress rings on both hooves.

2. The left front picture shows a good flair on the lateral and running under on the medial.
The flair to me has always meant the opposite side was bearing the bulk of the weight and the flair side is tipped thus allowing more room to continue to grow and extend out.
Thus the rolling or tucking under on the medial (in this case)
Picture 1 shows this. Medial side is jamming up and lateral side is reaching for more ground. (look at coronary)

3. Looking at the hair line you can see the jamming up, also shown and indicative of the stress rings in your hooves.

4. I also felt that the toe was a bit to long, and one of the pictures made me feel the heels in that picture were to long (but that may be just the angle of the picture, and in the picture showing it trimmed you look like you addressed this)

So what am I saying with all of this ?

I think a good basic trim of bringing back the heels and beveling the toe in the trim, then making a shoe that fits with a rockered toe will ease the break over and relieve the stress. (It will also help back up the toe)
Balance the hooves medial/laterally and keep the flairs off.

By fitting wide medially and this being a competition horse I would be concerned of stepping on the shoe or hitting the opposite leg. (even if you safed the shoe from the toe to the heel medially, thus giving a wide base but fit to the hoof at the sole/shoe bearing surface, I would still be a bit concerened about interfereing)
Others on this site who shoe these animals for this sport can give a more knowledgable suggestion.
I guess I would stay with Cynthia-Jay on this and look at a bar shoe.
BUT it is the trim over time that will be most effective.

That flair is one reason that hoof splays (although it could be in addition to conformation)

I agree with Cynthia-Jay and am pretty much reiterating what she has already said.
X-rays are always a strong helpful source to use when in doubt.

Also look at the toe length on the rear. I am making an assumption here.

If that front foot continues to splay then roll the break over point of the shoe to ease the stress. Even if it is off center due to the positioning of the hoof.

I will add one last thought;
If the horse is made this way, splayed or pidgeon toed then shoe him this way.
Forceing an animals leg to look straight only causes more problems due to stress ALL the way up the leg and will effect the whole body movement.

Good luck friend

my 2 cents worth ;)
"you may not like what I say" !
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I thought my life had come to a close with Cindy's passing, but there is life after death Thankyou Sharon !

Bruce Matthews
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 02:49 #5

Bruce, Cynthia Jay, thanks so much for taking the time to post about this horse. I appreciate it. I see the things in the pics you have pointed out. Especiallly where the jamming is occurring at the coronet. I think the biggest question I have is about handling this type of lateral flare. There is no stretching of the white line. In fact, it is quite tight up to the sole. I was always taught to remove flares by dressing the outer wall a maximum of 1/2 the thickness of the wall. In this foot she has app. 3/8 - 1/2 in. more foot on the lateral side. Using this method of flare removal isn't going to do much to give her more symmetry.(any help on this ?)

Bruce, I can see that I can still take her heels back more and of course back up the toe. As a rule, in addition to insuring A/P and med/lat balance I would place a shoe where the foot should be. In this case a shoe with additional medial support, possibly filling with an arylic so she doesn't step the shoe off. What do you think of that, possibly a straight bar shoe with rockered toe fitted where the foot should be. As this horse has the winter off and possibly longer she won't be competing for a while.

At the moment the owner is prepared to keep her just for the grandchildren. He would be quite happy if we could bring her around so she could continue to compete.

Once again, thanks so much folks. It helps a lot to look at a problem through someone elses eyes.....:)
Patrick Ards
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 03:04 #6

  • vthorseshoe
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Honestly Patrick, if the horse is done competeing and will be pasture pet for graqnd kids, I would get aggressive and take the flair off and balance the foot.
Bring the heels back even with the medial side rolling under.

It will take time but a good trim in a year can make that hoof look pretty good.

my 2 cents worth ;)
"you may not like what I say" !
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quote Cindy Matthews 1948-2006


I thought my life had come to a close with Cindy's passing, but there is life after death Thankyou Sharon !

Bruce Matthews
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 03:04 #7

  • Jay Mickle
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Symmetry is not always possible in horses with compromised conformation. My guess is that a plumb line dropped from the point of the shoulder comes through the medial side of the hoof. While a shoe fit full on that side fits our sense of symmetry might it not also increase the forces on the medial wall? It's possible floating the heel along with Equipak or pad with impression material might best serve to reduce peak ground reaction forces. Just some thoughts.
Jay Mickle
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 11:34 #8

  • vthorseshoe
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Hi Jay;

Pondering what you are saying.
From what I am seeing looking at photo #1.
I see a pretty equal hoof looking at it from the front.
Remove the flair and that foot will balance out.
(the flair is tipping the hoof. Get aggressive and take the flair off in one shot)
The long toe and the flair have transfered the weight to the medial heel area thus causing it to roll under.

Once trimmed, If you ran a plumb line I don't think it would be that far off.
If you divide the hoof wall in half it has pretty equal parts on both sides of the line.
Also if this was hoof was off you would see a much straighter wall medially.
This hoof look way to much equal with nice lines on both sides.

I would like to see a complete front shot of the horse, head to ground and squared up.

I just went back and looked at all the shots again, and I still think it is just a case of being trimmed out of balance and allowed to grow this way.
A good trim where the weight is transfered back where it should be would make this horse stand nice.
And I don't think doing so would cuse undo stress medially.
BUT !! Without a good front shot of the horse standing all squared up, it is just speculation.

my 2 cents worth ;)
"you may not like what I say" !
-but-
"you'll never have any doubts where I stand
quote Cindy Matthews 1948-2006


I thought my life had come to a close with Cindy's passing, but there is life after death Thankyou Sharon !

Bruce Matthews
Southeast...
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 13:22 #9

  • cynthia-jay
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I'd have to agree with Bruce, 100%

he has assesed the balance issues as I would

this horse in full view, may be sided, or off diagonally

unload the hoof and "balance it up" I don't feel it is conformational, but muscular/skelator in relation to balance issues

as always

Cynthia Jay:)
Cynthia Jay
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 14:03 #10

Jay Mickle wrote:
Symmetry is not always possible in horses with compromised conformation. My guess is that a plumb line dropped from the point of the shoulder comes through the medial side of the hoof. While a shoe fit full on that side fits our sense of symmetry might it not also increase the forces on the medial wall? It's possible floating the heel along with Equipak or pad with impression material might best serve to reduce peak ground reaction forces. Just some thoughts.

I agree.

It appears to me Patrick did remove what lateral flaring he could. If you divide the hoof from the central sucli in picture of the foot with Patrick holding the foot up. It looks like that is as close to symmetry as you can get on this foot. Also if you look at the lateral view after the trim the flaring has been brought back into white horn. In the before picture of the bottom view the white line is tight all around and not a lot of hoof wall to play with. The heels have been trimmed back, medial heel ended up floated, it does appear the lateral heel and quarter is slightly higher, but that is hard to tell from a picture. I would be hesitant to get too aggressive with the lateral aspect on these feet and possibly compromise the integrity of the hoof capsule. The medial aspect is jammed from the toe to the medial heel and from what I can see in the pictures I would not assume this to be caused by an unbalanced trim. Could be anything, compromised lamina attachment for one thing and a good reason for Radiographs.

I would try shortening up the shoeing cycle, bar shoes and frog support. Just my opinion but I would not fit fuller medially trying to achieve symmetry considering the amount of loading and jamming that is already placed on the medial aspect.
Phil Armitage, CF
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 14:52 #11

  • cuttinshoer
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This is my take, it is conformational the coffin bone is not positioned squarely with p-2, it is offset laterally. This comformation will cause the horse to land on the medial heel creating the jamming, The frog on this horse probably doesn't point right down the center either, the hoof capsule is probably a little rotated due to the jamming, giving the illusion of a flare. Watch the horse move and get it to land and load it's feet as flat and as smooth as you can.
Justin Decker

"As I see it, good enough is never good enough, it's just an excuse for mediocrity. If every shoeing ain't worth your best shot, you're just going through the motions." Tom Stovall, CJF
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 14:58 #12

  • cuttinshoer
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Jay Mickle wrote:
Symmetry is not always possible in horses with compromised conformation. My guess is that a plumb line dropped from the point of the shoulder comes through the medial side of the hoof. While a shoe fit full on that side fits our sense of symmetry might it not also increase the forces on the medial wall? It's possible floating the heel along with Equipak or pad with impression material might best serve to reduce peak ground reaction forces. Just some thoughts.

I agree with you Jay, Used to shoe one the same as this one, optical illusions of what we think they should look like are not always right for the horse.
Justin Decker

"As I see it, good enough is never good enough, it's just an excuse for mediocrity. If every shoeing ain't worth your best shot, you're just going through the motions." Tom Stovall, CJF
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 15:19 #13

cuttinshoer wrote:
This is my take, it is conformational the coffin bone is not positioned squarely with p-2, it is offset laterally. This comformation will cause the horse to land on the medial heel creating the jamming, The frog on this horse probably doesn't point right down the center either, the hoof capsule is probably a little rotated due to the jamming, giving the illusion of a flare. Watch the horse move and get it to land and load it's feet as flat and as smooth as you can.

You mean like this one Justin. This is from a horse that I do with similar problems. Medial jamming and sheared heel. Currently have him in alum straight bar shoes with frog support soft IM and floating the medial heel. So far he likes it a lot.

Phil Armitage, CF
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"Anyone who proposes to do good must not expect people to roll stones out of his way, but must accept his lot calmly if they even roll a few more upon it." Albert Schweitzer
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 18:11 #14

  • cynthia-jay
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film was suggested for this horse as well, which would confirm alot of issues

however, as Bruce has pointed out, look at the growth pattern,/rings...

suggest un-balanced trimming

look at both hooves before and after/ hoof placement as well

"no heels, no horse"

Cynthia Jay:)
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shoot first, ask questions later, dead men tell no tails, nor do they tie up the legal system or jails
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RE:Asymmetrical front feet 05 Dec 2009 20:28 #15

cynthia-jay wrote:
film was suggested for this horse as well, which would confirm alot of issues

however, as Bruce has pointed out, look at the growth pattern,/rings...

suggest un-balanced trimming

look at both hooves before and after/ hoof placement as well

"no heels, no horse"

Cynthia Jay:)

The beauty of this forum is differences in opinion. Would be interesting to see the horses conformation and x-rays. :)

I think it is conformation and from what I saw in the pics of the hoof wall thickness and tight white line Patrick's trim looks good to me. Definitely uneven loading, however I do not think it is as simple as removing lateral flares.

Care to elaborate on "no heels, no horse". :)
Phil Armitage, CF
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