Re: Ex racehorse Thoroughbred going barefoot! Piccies
Just an update really, I cant belive its been 6 weeks since we went barefoot with our ex race horse - it seems like 6 months! - we have sometimes gone two steps forward and one step back at times and I can fully understand why horse owners have the shoes put back on, within days of them being removed. I would always recommend hoof boots to hand, all ready if you do decide to go barefoot, we couldnt have coped other wise. Not with our flat footed, thin soled, chipping, cracking, crappy feet chap. After his shoes were removed, my farrier didnt want to touch them as they were so sore from him yaking his shoes off so many times, he just trimmed/rasped. Then after a week, they collapsed really, the old hoof at the bottom where the nail holes were, came away but at different angles so they were misshappen, also a crack developed at an alarming rate where the old two clip was, and started to separate, my farrier widened it so, I could keep clean with diluted bleech to avoid infection, he also burnt the hoof just above the top of the crack to stop it following further up the foot. So, followed 5 weeks of constant scrubbing with diluted Milton each morning, and checkig for heat etc, especially after our scare when he was lame with hot feet a week after going barefoot. We regulated his grazing, not rich grass and also changed the diet so absolutely no sugar.
His feet have grown at an astonishing rate, with barefoot horses, you must ride as much as possible to encourage hoof growth, he has always been 100% sound in the field, from day one actually, but was lame on the concrete yard and impossible to go down the farm track to the field without his cavallo horse hoof boots. The boots took time to get used to but, now I am quite an expert and Spirit lifts his feet up to have them popped on. We started to ride every evening for just 15 minutes in the field, booted up, plus some hacking (if he can behave himself though!) - two weeks ago he walked sound on the concrete yard, I was soo happy.
Then, we had the wet weather, I made the mistake of leaving him out for the night, and for the day, in wet weather - this was mistake, when I went to get him in from the field, one of his front hooves had broken away and to my horror, the top of the hoof was literally peeling away, when I picked up his hoof and had a good look underneath, you could see separation between the outer wall, water line and white line, since discovered that this is called wall separation, due to poor quality hooves at the bottom, the stretched white line, being flared at the bottoms, due for trim etc, and I have been naughty and should have had him trimmed a week ago but, thought I could wait for 4 weeks. The otherside is not so bad but, both feet show separation at the bottom. I have spoken to my barefoot trimmer and she is coming out tomorrow at 1pm - cant wait, have lots to discuss with her. Also, we have a hole in the sole, just behind the toe, I dont know if it was an old abscess that had burst, or that because his sole was so weak, a stone etc had made the hole, I am cleaning it and putting redhorse hoof putty in, again shall discuss this
I have taken some photos and shall load these up to show you. Although his feet dont look very pretty, he has honestly grown a good inch in the past 6 weeks, which is amazing as he never ever grew hoof when he was shod, also he is doing really well and can be led on concrete ground without any protests, again sound and this was a horse that would be dog lame whenever he pulled a shoe. Still have a long way to go though.