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RE: Maggie's survey

Title: RE: Maggie's survey


Our older horses have "interesting" feet... not the norm.  Here goes anyway.  (BTW - you want to know length of toe at time of trim, at 2 weeks out, before retrim?) 

General info -

We only measure front angles - not sure why. :-)

Non-working horses with normal feet go barefoot until foot wear exceeds foot growth, then we shoe all round. 

We use St Croix brand shoes since they seem to have admirable wear and need only minimal shaping for our horses feet. 

For rough terrain, we use Shock Tamer pads - multiple density pad, kind of like human running shoes.  Work GREAT!  Otherwise, we pull on easyboot over the shoes.

I like side clips to stabilize the shoe from side to side, especially when we ride in rocky areas.  It alleviates some of the stress when a foot is placed partially on a rock and the shoe grabs.  We'll use pre-pulled clips unless they're being fitted over a pad...need longer clips then.

We reshoe every 5-6 weeks.

We supplement one of our three horses with biotin 15 mg daily to improve his feet.  It helped.  No difference seen in the others after 2 years, so it wasn't continued.

We do not pare away frog and only take a minimal amount off of the sole.

The horses with foot abnormalities get regular foot films to evaluate the boney alignment related to the hoof capsule and to watch for any signs of degenerative arthritis.

The "Guys":

Rocket - 14 yo 16H polish arab gelding with a grade 1.5 clubbed front foot with heel contracture from trauma to shoulder as a foal.  Good front foot - 55*  Clubbed foot It wants to be 61*, we fight for 58-59*.  He uses St Croix Eventers with side clips all round.  He does well with the wide web of this shoe.  Always shod all round, but may get back shoes off this fall since I have a youngster that I'll be putting miles on instead.  We use rim snow pads in the winter.  (Lots of snow here.)

Major - semi-retired 18 yo QH-TB 15.2H.  History of road (mechanical) founder as an 8 year old with approx 5* rotation in each foot (P3) at that time.  His angle is 56-57* with a truncated toe to prevent laminar shear.    With proper trimming, his rotation is measured at 1-3* depending on the foot.  He uses a St. croix shoe with a rolled rim and fullered - I can't remember which one it is.  The St Croix Eventers (wide web shoe) seemed to set the nails in the wrong place plus the toe showed signs of dishing within 3 weeks.  Side clips when competing.  Always shod in front to protect his feet & coffin bones.  Goes barefoot in rear when "laid up".  Snow accumulation is not a problem with his flat soles.

Razz - 14.31/2 H 4yo crabbet-bred Arab, just being started under saddle.  Light work only, so barefoot and trimmed every 6 weeks.  Angles were different on all 4 feet when we got him 8 weeks ago.  We tried to even him up slowly, so it's hard to say what he'll look like after this next trim.  I think that our goal for the front feet will b around 53* based on his conformation.

I hope that this helps.

Linda Flemmer
Blue Wolf Ranch
Bruceton Mills, WV

-----Original Message-----
From: Maggie Mieske []
Subject: RC: Maggie's survey

 If you will reply privately to avoid cluttering up ridecamp, I promise to
 those who know, what angle, length of toe, etc. do you use?  How many go
 barefoot?  How many just have shoes in the front?  All the way around?
 What kind of shoe do you use?  Do you prefer shoes with or without clips
 (and why)?  I really am interested the most in the angle and length of toe
 that you are going with.

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