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Tender Feet--Durasole, Venice Turpentine, Keratex and such

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  • Tender Feet--Durasole, Venice Turpentine, Keratex and such

    So, on my other thread about how to help feet and the responses and reading up a lot more, this is what I've come up with, and tell me what you think about it being right and what each thing does.

    Venice Turpentine is a natural resin that has properties that pull out heat and the results of pounding for whatever reason. It's been used for centuries and is the main ingredient in most hoof packing compounds. It would be best for more accute problems.

    Durasole is a sole thickener that is different than a hardener that Tom loves and is good to build up a hoof. This would be good as a long term solution to prepare the hoof for pounding.

    Keratex and sole hardeners are probably more for people who live in wet climates and have horses with soft feet from too much water. It seems to dry and crack the hoof if used to much.

    So, I live in a dry climate in the summer, and I'm thinking to use VT to sooth the sole of the hoof from pounding on hard ground, and then using Duarasole to help thicken up the sole.

    If you live in a climate where horse's feet are perpetually wet and the hoof falls apart from that, than a sole hardener would be more what you want.

    Does this sound like I got it right?

  • #2
    Durasole and Keratex both contain formalin - which is a fixative that cross-links with keratin horn molecules.

    Keratex has a plasticiser which slows down the cross-link process and reduces the severity of cracking that would occur in the hoof wall if straight formalin was used.

    Durasole has a higher concentration of formalin, it cross-links immediately and therefore should not be used on the wall as it will make the wall brittle.

    Formalin is also a desiccant.

    Durasole is most effective when the horn is first dried out before application. If the cells are full of water, then they can't absorb enough formalin to cross-link.

    Usually folks that have not gotten good results with Durasole have been applying it to wet feet without taking the time to dry the feet out first. A half hour with a heat gun or a hair dryer is time well spent before applying Durasole to a wet, thin, soft sole.

    Venice turpentine is a desiccant and reportedly has some analgesic properties as well. So it will help dry out the sole, but it will not cross-link and harden the horn molecules to the same degree as formalin.

    Comment


    • #3
      Well, I am certainly not an "expert" but I started a thread on Venice Turpentine recently and wanted to convey my results!

      I am in an odd climate, in that it is dry, as in no rain, but we do get fog, which can make the ground, and especially pasture wet.

      I have been applying VT daily to my horse's tender, some times too soft soles. (actually, a week in, I mixed iodine with the VT, and have been painting that on).

      I have had good results! At first it dried and helped thicken the sole, which eventually started shedding and revealed a more concave sole (we had a dreaded bout of "flat soles" this winter).

      The new sole that was exposed after shedding was not too tender, but I keep applying VT daily to help harden it.

      I have been able to ride on pavement and gravel roads on my barefoot girl without problems. Before the VT she was "ouchy" and couldn't be ridden on gravel roads.
      APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman

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      • #4
        Spinoff: what's the difference in Farrier's Barrier and Durasole?
        "ronnie was the gifted one, victor was the brilliant intellect, and i [GM], well, i am the plodder."

        Comment


        • #5
          Keratex has helped my horse somewhat. He has crappy brittle feet. we do live in a wet place. V.T. is a mess to use, and it did not help so much. However, i did go back to steel shoes on my vet's recommendation b/c my horse bruises his sole too much to be comfortable bf. Good luck to you.

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          • Original Poster

            #6
            Thanks, Tom. Helpful explanation. It's good to be clearer on exactly what everything does and how it works.

            Comment


            • #7
              Pads

              Not what you want to hear. BUT. I live in the NW. Perpetually wet this spring. I have tried it all but I also have a life with kids, work, husband etc. I keep my horses at home but I still do not have time to apply all that crap all the time. I have tried them but unless you are CONSISTENT and you do not have your horses on 24/7 turnout it does not work. My horses are out all the time in mud, wet, pasture, etc. They have dry areas to go to but they DON'T. So, I have put pads on. And it works. Just my tiny area of expertise. Believe me, I would LOVE to save the money.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Tom Bloomer View Post
                Durasole is most effective when the horn is first dried out before application. If the cells are full of water, then they can't absorb enough formalin to cross-link.

                Usually folks that have not gotten good results with Durasole have been applying it to wet feet without taking the time to dry the feet out first. A half hour with a heat gun or a hair dryer is time well spent before applying Durasole to a wet, thin, soft sole.

                Venice turpentine is a desiccant and reportedly has some analgesic properties as well. So it will help dry out the sole, but it will not cross-link and harden the horn molecules to the same degree as formalin.
                Guess my horse is one of the odd balls as Durasole did nothing for him. And not because I didn't follow directions. I did apply as suggested (used a hair dryer first). Still didn't help him.

                But the VT did.

                I'm more of the camp of whatever works for your horse... go for it. Though many people recommend one certain product, it doesn't work for all horses.

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                • #9
                  Durasole didn't work for me either. bummer - I'd have been thoroughly delighted if it did.

                  Keratex didn't do much either.

                  What can I say: tender TB feet. They need more than topical stuff sometimes.
                  ----------------------------------------
                  PSSM / EPSM and Shivers Forum
                  http://pssm.xanthoria.com/
                  ----------------------------------------

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                  • #10
                    There is no product you can buy to put on a horse's feet that will make up for regular maintenance from a diligent, competent farrier, and a good husbandry environment.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've been very impressed with Hawthorne Sole Pack paint on.
                      "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                      Thread killer Extraordinaire

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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Tom, there seem to be a lot of people asking about Magic Cushion on other threads. Am I right in remembering you said Venice Turpentine was the main ingredient in it? Would the only difference between the two be that Magic Cushion has it in a Play Dough type substance that you pack in the hoof? Would that hold the VT in better, because it just seems simpler to paint the VT on.

                        Also, I read on the other thread you can pack Magic Cushion under a pad. Would it be a good idea to do that with VT? When reshoeing with a pad, paint VT on under the pad, and then put a pad on?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Back when my TB was in pads, the farrier always packed the soles with some fiber (not sure the source, plant based) mixed with Venice Turpentine. Keep the soles healthy, and sand / gavel out.
                          APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Appsolute View Post
                            Back when my TB was in pads, the farrier always packed the soles with some fiber (not sure the source, plant based) mixed with Venice Turpentine. Keep the soles healthy, and sand / gavel out.
                            Odds are, he used oakum.

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