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Shoeing Recommendations?

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  • Shoeing Recommendations?

    Hi, I was hoping to get some input from this forum on my gelding's next set of shoes. The farrier who does his shoes pretty much has access to everything (hot, cold, glue, nails, polymers, steels, alumnium AAAH!), but I want to decide ahead of time this time...he almost has too many choices for me.

    My experience with shoes is very limited, so please post your thoughts/opinions...all valuable, I'm interested in collecting information. Not really any horsey people around where I live, and I'm not taking lessons or in a formal program right now.

    Horse is a six year old Trakehner, 16.3 with suitable-sized hooves under him. He tends to be quite flat-soled, and his hoof wall is thinnish and brittle...very easy to trim through, wears quickly. Horse gets VERY footsore without shoes, it shows up almost immediately in his gait.

    Horse is not in great condition after a winter recovering from injury, and was brought back into riding starting 9 weeks ago. He is up to being ridden 2-3 times per week, on hard-packed dirt trails and grass, with about 1mile of asphalt road taken at a walk. I alternate a shorter ride (5 km maximum) with a longer one (12 km) mainly at the walk, but nice stretches are taken at an easy rising trot and I usually let him out to canter at least once for about a minute. His last set of winter shoes (plain steel, borium front and rear, snow pads in front) recently came off (we have a long winter, the snow was not yet gone when his shoes were finished and I pulled them)

    What kind of shoeing arrangement would you be looking at for a horse doing this kind of work? Lightweight aluminum? Regular steel? Boots? Would you look at doing some kind of pad or polymer to reduce concussion? Does any of that work? Would the snow pad have provided any cushioning that he might be used to now?
    Lifestyle coordinator for Zora, Spooky, Wolfgang and Warrior

  • #2
    My Tb mare has decent hoof, but is flat footed with a low heel. She gets very sore if no shoes. In the past she was shod in wide web aluminum, but several years ago farrier and I agreed to change her to steel shoes. Her hoof seemed to flair out more as it grew with the aluminum shoes. I do a variety of things, dabble in dressage(very low level), hunter pace, very low level hunter stuff, trail ride alot. The steel shoes seem to last the best, and her feet don't flair as they grow. I think if I were you I would try the plain steel like he was in before. After years of owning horses and doing some part time stable work at a show barn, I find the more things a horse has on its feet (ie pads etc) the easier the shoes seem to come off, plus it is way pricier.

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    • #3
      Have you thought about the glue on shoes? If she has thin hoof walls it would keep her from damage if she lost a steel or aluminum shoe? My farrier and I were just talking about glue on shoes and he really likes them for certain horses.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        I was hoping to hear feedback from people who might have used glue on shoes on that type of terrain.

        So far my only reviews on glue ons have been "for a horse on stall rest who can't otherwise hold on a shoe." According to the real experience they don't seem to hold up to even full-time outdoor turnout. Very interested to hear what product and shoe combos have actually stood up for regular trail use.
        Lifestyle coordinator for Zora, Spooky, Wolfgang and Warrior

        Comment


        • #5
          There is a boarder at my barn that uses glue on shoes. They last about 4 to 5 weeks. He rides everyday on trails. He also rides some on hard roads. The trails are rocky in some places and o.k. in other. They are not really maintained, so in some areas they can be pretty rough. He uses alum. glue on and at the end of 4 or 5 weeks, the shoes are worn so thin that the toes are ready to split. They are expensive, close to $400.00 per 4 shoe set compared to $150 for a set of 4 steel nail ons.

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          • #6
            Wow!! That is pricey. I didn't happen to ask him the cost of glue ons. I would expect that nail on aluminum would wear as fast if ridden on ground like that.
            My farrier didn't act like it was just for horses on stall / paddock rest. These customers were riding their horses normally.

            Comment


            • #7
              I've never used glue-ons, but the one time I had my horse shod in aluminums, after a 25-mile endurance ride they were already pretty beat up. I decided to go the barefoot route and use hoof boots when I'm riding on rocky ground.
              RIP Victor... I'll miss you, you big galumph.

              Comment


              • #8
                shoes

                There are many excellent boot choices theses days....even endurance people are using them with success. You are describing a hoof that is not strong so surely running a bunch of nails through the wall isn't going to improve anything. I would give boots a try, can't hurt anything and there are sites to sell used boots. From experience I can say that proper fit is crucial as you begin to move beyond walk/trot..... I have both Hoof Wings and Cavellos and my driving horse can fly through mud, water, stones and blacktop with no problem....once I got a good fit and learned to put them on properly. Takes maybe a minute or two per foot to put on, seconds to take off.
                Budget wise boots are cheaper, more $$ up front but will last for months.Somewhere on the net there is a you tube comparing the concussion of a shod versus bare foot and it's pretty dramatic.

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                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  ^ do you have any experience using steel shoes and then boots on the same horse?

                  I have reviewed a lot of, um, "evidence" which is presented in a misleadingly academic format regarding concussion that leaves me less than confident. Probably a professional hazard, I'm a mechanical engineer...I just look at some of these articles and can't get past the false correlations and incorrect biomechanical assumptions.

                  So I'm digging for anecdotes. At least I can question the people giving the anecdotes for details...

                  I'm not opposed to boots for this horse, as I indicated, I have very limited access to real live horse people. No one I know who rides more than casually once or twice a week uses boots here, but that's not me arguing against using them. I would LOVE to buy my horse some blaze orange Renegades, if I had some confidence that they would prevent foot soreness on this hard-packed ground over ~40km per week. My farrier (understandably, I suppose) is not wild about boots.
                  Lifestyle coordinator for Zora, Spooky, Wolfgang and Warrior

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Start with the Golden Rule of Equine Husbandry: You give the horse what it needs, when it needs it, and in appropriate quantity and quality.

                    A thin walled, flat footed horse that gets sore just walking around needs protection while just walking around. If the horse is stall kept then protection that can be applied whenever it leaves the stall (riding, turnout, etc.) and removed when it goes back to the stall might work. If this is feasible then it may meet the above definition.

                    If the horse is pasture kept it's unlikely that "removable protection" will be adequate without a significant application of labor to check the horse frequently, remove the protection when it becomes contaminated (water, grit, dirt, etc.), and clean the foot and reapply the protection.

                    Some horses are such that they will become sore even in a stall without hoof protection. Removeable protection can be used in this circumstance, but will need the same type of routine checks and maintenance as a pasture kept horse.

                    If the horse was staying serviceably sound for its job in shoes then put the shoes back on (those that were doing the job). The horse's performance was telling you it was getting what it needed. There is no reason to change.

                    If the horse was just a bit off the maybe the shoeing needs just a bit of "tweeking."

                    Talk with your farrier and review alternatives. Talk with your vet. if you think that's a good idea. The KISS principle here is your friend. Start simple and if that does not work then you can add complexity (pads, etc.).

                    Good luck in your project.

                    G.
                    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Do your own test. Lay a metal shoe on you hand and hit it. Do the same with a boot. What one does dissipate concussion and shock and will assist in weight bearing...

                      For all of my horses I go with St Croix lite rims.

                      If you feel you really need the added protection of a wider web shoe go with Kerckhaert. All the other wider shoes will be very slippery when trail riding.


                      Originally posted by rugbygirl View Post
                      ^ do you have any experience using steel shoes and then boots on the same horse?

                      I have reviewed a lot of, um, "evidence" which is presented in a misleadingly academic format regarding concussion that leaves me less than confident. Probably a professional hazard, I'm a mechanical engineer...I just look at some of these articles and can't get past the false correlations and incorrect biomechanical assumptions.

                      So I'm digging for anecdotes. At least I can question the people giving the anecdotes for details...

                      I'm not opposed to boots for this horse, as I indicated, I have very limited access to real live horse people. No one I know who rides more than casually once or twice a week uses boots here, but that's not me arguing against using them. I would LOVE to buy my horse some blaze orange Renegades, if I had some confidence that they would prevent foot soreness on this hard-packed ground over ~40km per week. My farrier (understandably, I suppose) is not wild about boots.

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