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  1. #1
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    Default Wide vs. narrow horse shoes?

    I recently switched farriers. The new farrier used shoes that are narrower than what had previously been on my horse. Why would a farrier choose wider vs narrower shoes? What are the effects for the horse?
    "You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed." - The Little Prince



  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by retrofit View Post
    I recently switched farriers. The new farrier used shoes that are narrower than what had previously been on my horse. Why would a farrier choose wider vs narrower shoes? What are the effects for the horse?
    In all likelihood it was probably a different make of shoe from a different company just to take a shot in the dark about it.

    Aside from that reasons for choosing wider vs narrower are:
    1) Proper fit for the horse.
    In most cases the web works best when it's double the width of the horse's hoof wall at the toe. This is not a hard and fast rule but majority of the time works pretty well.

    2) Floatation vs Traction
    Sometimes when more or less traction is desired it can be adjusted with shoe design in this way. Use of the horse and ground conditions are factored in as well.
    YMMV

    Now, why aren't you asking your farrier instead of a bunch of strangers on the internet?
    Last edited by sonofasailor; Dec. 10, 2012 at 10:29 AM.



  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by sonofasailor View Post
    Now, why aren't you asking your farrier instead of a bunch of strangers on the internet?
    Because I won't see him for another few weeks
    "You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed." - The Little Prince



  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by retrofit View Post
    Because I won't see him for another few weeks
    He doesn't have a phone?!?!?!

    Seriously, you pay for a service and you're entitled to an explanation of the 5Ws of that service.

    Technology, here, is your friend!

    G.
    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão


    2 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
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    OK seriously, I plan to ask my farrier when I see him next. This is not an urgent matter and I don't need to take time out of his busy schedule to call him with a trivial question. But meanwhile I'm curious, and asking questions / getting answers seems to be a primary function of this forum. Is this no longer the case? Should we warn the COTH ad subscribers that it is no longer acceptable to ask or answer questions on the internet, and site hits are about to take a precipitous drop?
    "You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed." - The Little Prince


    13 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
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    Default

    i would also call and ask. it would make me nervous, and i would have asked at the time, but i don't think it is trivial at all. Every horse is different and i am sure he has a reason. If not, i would wonder about the farrier..



  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by retrofit View Post
    OK seriously, I plan to ask my farrier when I see him next. This is not an urgent matter and I don't need to take time out of his busy schedule to call him with a trivial question. But meanwhile I'm curious, and asking questions / getting answers seems to be a primary function of this forum. Is this no longer the case? Should we warn the COTH ad subscribers that it is no longer acceptable to ask or answer questions on the internet, and site hits are about to take a precipitous drop?
    Asking a question, here or anywhere else, is a good way to get general information.

    Asking a question of the farrier who put on a set of shoes unlike those that went before is neither a "general question" nor is it a "trivial question." It's a fair and honest question.

    Clearly the difference made you take your time to ask here. If it's that important drop a dime and ask the one person who knows for sure!!!!!

    G.
    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão


    2 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
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    Smile

    Maybe your farrier only had narrow shoes on the truck that day.



  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by retrofit View Post
    I recently switched farriers. The new farrier used shoes that are narrower than what had previously been on my horse. Why would a farrier choose wider vs narrower shoes? What are the effects for the horse?
    The OP didn't ask why HER farrier chose to use one shoe versus another. It would seem she just wants general reasons for why a farrier might choose one over another.
    "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."


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  10. #10
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    This is just the kind of question I would think up right before bed, and ask you oh-so-helpful COTHers before I forgot about it. Plus, it's always nice to hear what many other people think, just to have that much more information to ponder.

    Great question, can anybody actually provide an answer? Or are we all supposed to be telling the OP they're being dumb?
    "On the back of a horse I felt whole, complete, connected to that vital place in the center of me...and the chaos within me found balance."


    11 members found this post helpful.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Me View Post
    In all likelihood it was probably a different make of shoe from a different company just to take a shot in the dark about it.

    Aside from that reasons for choosing wider vs narrower are:
    1) Proper fit for the horse.
    In most cases the web works best when it's double the width of the horse's hoof wall at the toe. This is not a hard and fast rule but majority of the time works pretty well.

    2) Floatation vs Traction
    Sometimes when more or less traction is desired it can be adjusted with shoe design in this way. Use of the horse and ground conditions are factored in as well.
    YMMV
    Quote Originally Posted by Ainsley688 View Post

    Great question, can anybody actually provide an answer? Or are we all supposed to be telling the OP they're being dumb?
    What part of this reply didn't you understand?



  12. #12
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    Narrower/thinner shoes are usually cheaper and require less work to shape.

    They weigh less and therefore alter movement less.

    They may be a better choice for thin-walled horses because the nail placement tends to be closer to the edge.

    They provide more traction but less support and ground surface protection.

    Jennifer


    10 members found this post helpful.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThirdCharm View Post
    Narrower/thinner shoes are usually cheaper and require less work to shape.

    They weigh less and therefore alter movement less.

    They may be a better choice for thin-walled horses because the nail placement tends to be closer to the edge.

    They provide more traction but less support and ground surface protection.

    Jennifer
    Thanks Jennifer! I appreciate the factual answer.

    For those of you wondering why I didn't ask my farrier at the time ... my mare is not always cooperative for the farrier. It had gotten worse due to ulcers which were still being treated at the time, plus she was coming off a short lay-up for a leg injury. I was pretty concerned about how she would behave so I was really focusing in on her and I didn't even notice the change in shoes until I picked her feet the next day. This time around she is feeling much better and back in regular work, so I should be able to watch a little more & ask any questions at the time.
    "You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed." - The Little Prince


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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by sonofasailor View Post
    What part of this reply didn't you understand?
    Probably too technical.


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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by retrofit View Post
    Thanks Jennifer! I appreciate the factual answer.
    Not all of it is accurate or scientifically factual.

    A wide shoe provides no more "support" than a narrow shoe. The weight bearing surface area (that which the shoe "supports") of the hoof wall on top of the shoe is exactly the same regardless of whether it is standing on a wide shoe, a narrow shoe, or barefoot on a flat hard surface. What is different is the ground force dynamics of how a wide vs. narrow, vs, round, vs flat, vs concave shoe interacts with the ground, how far and fast the shoe itself penetrates into soft ground, and how much resistance or reduction of resistance the shoe provides to turnover in various soil conditions.


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  16. #16
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    I meant 'support' in terms of a wide shoe tending to 'sink' less in soft footing, providing more support for the limb overall in the stance phase of the stride. Obviously it doesn't contact any more of the hoof wall, since you're not SUPPOSED to have contact inside the white line.

    Jennifer



  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThirdCharm View Post
    I meant 'support' in terms of a wide shoe tending to 'sink' less in soft footing,
    Yes. The opposite of sink is float.

    providing more support for the limb overall in the stance phase of the stride.
    Still wrong. You just earned an eph in fisics for pharriers.

    Once the foot is planted in the stance phase nothing is different regardless of what kind of shoe is under the hoof. The type of shoe only has an effect on impact, load acceptance, unloading, static and dynamic friction, and flight.

    Obviously it doesn't contact any more of the hoof wall, since you're not SUPPOSED to have contact inside the white line.
    Why not? A barefoot horse makes contact with the ground inside the white line every time it loads its foot. Glue-on shoes are glued with full contact in this area. Why should a nailed shoe be any different?


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  18. #18
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    If the shoe has greater surface area and doesn't sink as deeply into the ground, particularly at the heels, it provides more support for the soft tissues of the leg. If you don't think so try walking across a lawn in skinny heeled shoes. Then explain to your shoeing clients how you sprained your ankle, should be good for some laughs, eh big guy?

    I'm aware that glue-on shoes have full contact, I was referring to the commonly used guidelines of the major certifying organizations that specify 'no sole contact inside the white line'. Regardless it couldn't contact any more hoof wall than a narrower shoe, because the hoof wall doesn't change in width and it would take a very narrow shoe indeed to not cover the width of the hoof wall.

    Jennifer



  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThirdCharm View Post
    If the shoe has greater surface area and doesn't sink as deeply into the ground, particularly at the heels, it provides more support for the soft tissues of the leg.
    Wrong again. Where do you come up with this silly drivel?

    Narrow vs. wide shoes that are fit to the same footprint do not change the A/P orientation of the loaded foot in the stance phase on soft ground. They only change the loading/unloading dynamics. To change the loaded orientation you must either change the base angle or the A/P base length distribution (effective angle) in relation to the center of weight bearing of the foot - which is in the front half of the foot.

    If the loaded angle does not change, then soft tissue stress and strain while loaded does not change either. That's math, not speculation.

    If you don't think so try walking across a lawn in skinny heeled shoes.
    That is a really stupid analogy. Your skinny heeled shoe is supporting your weight on a line through your calcaneus and in case you hadn't noticed, you really can't walk on your toes very long without having something to support your calcaneus because the human foot is heel loaded in stance weight bearing until elevated to unnatural angles, whereas the horse's foot is toe loaded in stance weight bearing regardless of angle due to the fact that P3 is located in the front half of the foot and the weight bearing is transmitted from P2 to P3 through the DIJ.

    Then explain to your shoeing clients how you sprained your ankle, should be good for some laughs, eh big guy?
    What is good for some laughs is your ridiculous assertions in regards to equine locomotion and even more ridiculous attempts to make them analogous with human locomotion. Methinks your heels have sunk so far your knuckles are dragging.

    Why not quit pretending you have a clue about how this stuff actually works while you're behind.

    I'm aware that glue-on shoes have full contact, I was referring to the commonly used guidelines of the major certifying organizations that specify 'no sole contact inside the white line'.
    So your "authority" is the arbitrary testing criteria used on farrier certification exams, not a biomechanical explanation. I left the door open here for you to impress me with an essay on foot flutter lameness and the mechanics of point load distribution.

    What farrier certification exams have you passed? AAPF?


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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bloomer View Post
    Wrong again. Where do you come up with this silly drivel?

    That is a really stupid analogy.

    What is good for some laughs is your ridiculous assertions...Methinks your heels have sunk so far your knuckles are dragging.

    Why not quit pretending you have a clue about how this stuff actually works while you're behind.

    So your "authority" is the arbitrary testing criteria used on farrier certification exams, not a biomechanical explanation. I left the door open here for you to impress me with an essay on foot flutter lameness and the mechanics of point load distribution.

    What farrier certification exams have you passed? AAPF?
    I personally would love to impress your hind end parts with my boot, but alas, I have to settle for the ignore list. Your customer service is just astounding.
    send some of their smart literate deer who can read road signs up here since ours are just run of the mill dumb ones who get splatted all over creation because they won't stay in the woods


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