Saturday, April 23, 2011

Hoof Rehab 101

Exhibit A for "Why You Should Not Go Three Months Without Trimming Your Horse's Hooves!" Salem arrived with 8-mile-long hooves that were chipped, flared, cracked, and generally looking fairly horrid. His walls were separating from the rest of the hoof on all 4 and he had huge toe callouses and TONS of false sole. Despite several days of major rasping, this is the sight that greeted Candy when she arrived for Salem's trim appointment today:

Note the giant chip on the left side of the hoof



Candy marked Salem's hooves to show approximately where they should be, but explained that she couldn't take everything off in one trim because doing do so would make Salem sore. The markings are a great visual, though, because they show just how overgrown his hooves are.

Salem was mainly cooperative during his trim, but he was clearly uncomfortable when his back hooves were being done. Obviously, his back was a bit sore, so we just took things slowly and gave him lots of breaks. And after tons of nipping, cutting, and rasping, Salem's hooves were back to somewhat normal.

 Much better! (And I love my Kensington fly boots!)

You can see the Sharpie mark where his hoof should be,
but we just couldn't get him there in one trim

This is his left front, which is the worst of his hooves -- it has a long way to go!

In two weeks, Salem will get another trim; after that, he will be able to go back to a regular 5-week schedule. In the meantime, I'm supposed to do lots of White Lightning soaks in order to kill all the bacteria/fungus/random-nastiness and to loosen up all the retained sole so it can slough off by itself.

So far:

Deworming -- Done
Hoof Issues -- Resolving
Bath -- Done
Ulcer Medication -- Ordered
Weight Gain -- Resolving (as in "Throwing Ridiculous Amounts of Food at Him")
Spring Shots -- Forthcoming (this Friday)
Tooth Check -- (Same as Above)

We're getting there!


Alana said...

Ooo hoof rehab. ick. At least he still has some frog, it could be worse, much worse!
I have thought about fly boots, but they don't seem like they cover enough to be worth it.
Good luck with him, I am really looking forward to, I dunno, eventing reports from you guys??!!?

SprinklerBandit said...

I'm so happy you guys are back together. :-) Not because of how it happened, but because you were just meant for each other.

Best of luck with the rehab. I love reading about it.

SprinklerBandit said...

I'm so happy you guys are back together. :-) Not because of how it happened, but because you were just meant for each other.

Best of luck with the rehab. I love reading about it.

Kristen Eleni Shellenbarger said...

Wowsers...poor baby and I KNOW you had his feet looking AHmazing. Sigh..well good to know she's taking her time with the trimming to allow the muscles/joints adjust to his new angles, etc.
I need to do white lightening too as this wet wet weather is just a breeding ground. How long to u soak each foot in the baggie? How often will you treat?

smazourek said...

Fortunately it looks like it won't take all that long to get his feet back in shape. There's a lot of overgrowth but the capsule didn't get *terribly* distorted.

Guess what? I'm going to the Oregon School of Natural Hoof Care in August!

Frizzle said...

Alana, the fly boots do make a big difference even though they only cover the lower leg. And, yeah, I would LOVE it if we become eventers!
SB, thank you! :-)
Kristen, each WL soak is 45 minutes and I will do them probably once or twice a week per hoof for two weeks.
Smazourek, Congrats!!! I'm sure you will learn a lot and become an incredible trimmer.

achieve1dream said...

A cheap way to kill/prevent thrush is salt water. I put 1/4 cup salt in a spray bottle, fill with water, shake well, clean the hooves well and spray the salt water all over the bottoms especially in the grooves. It also helps get the rest of the dirt and mud out of the grooves. Since it's just salt water I don't see why it could be used with the white lightning. Just a thought. It worked great for Chrome and is super cheap.

I'm glad you got Salem back and you're getting him back to optimum health. Keep up the great work!

Frizzle said...

Thanks, a1d, I will have to keep that in mind! I've used Lysol/water and ACV/water but had never heard of just using plain old salt water before.