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Horse loosing shoes- need advise

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  • Horse loosing shoes- need advise

    I live in Texas and it is VERY dry this summer. Have a horse with front shoes only and he doesn't have the best feet- on the small size with thin walls. I feed him high quality feed and very good hay plus general supplements and hoof supplements recommended by vet and farrier and keep bell boots on him. He keeps loosing shoes. My farrier puts the shoes on and then fills in all around with an acrylic but now that is not even keeping the shoe on- just found the shoe with the entire acrylic form in his stall. He is missing part of his hoof, so I don't think clips are an option right now because on one side, there is nothing to clip to. I have been told that the acrylic might be doing more harm than good by drying his feet out and preventing the hoof from growing as fast. I don't think he will stay sound without shoes. Any suggestions??? My farrier is on the "newer" side and has no objection to advise. Thanks.

  • #2
    I have a QH with the same feet, good diet, on hoof supplement and throws lots of shoes I've used every style of bellboot with no luck, still throws the shoes and tears up the boots. Not to mention tearing her foot up to the point that a shoe can't be nailed on.

    I pulled her shoes 5 weeks ago to let her hoof grow out a bit. I've been using Keratex religiously 3X per week, turning her out and riding in Cavallo Sport boots. Her feet look fantastic! The farrier came this morning to trim her and was really pleased, she's getting shoes back on in 2 weeks. We are going to hot shoe her in a lightweight steel shoe no clips, continue the Keratex 3x weekly, and I bought her another pair of Cavallos that will fit over the shoes for turnout. I'm really impressed with the Cavallo boots, I think they have made the difference and they really protect her feet.


    • #3
      I think you are overworking him. He needs to live free and fancy trot around with no shoes. Wild horses live without shoes you know.


      • #4
        Glue on shoes for a time or two should solve your problems , and allow the foot to grow out and get a healthier foot under him.


        • #5

          Could switch from acrylic to one of the better hoof repair materials, like Equithane or Equilox... These don't just fill-in, but functionally replace and reinforce the damaged wall.

          I'd just nail high and through (so that the nails would pull clean rather than ripping hoof off if they do get pulled), and consider using heel shields (a sort of wrap-around buttress clip) for a couple of short cycles to get some solid foot gown-out. Then go back to regular shoes (heel shields aren't great for long-term use) and box the devil out of them.

          Millwater's FARRIERY:
          The Illustrated Dictionary of Horseshoeing and Hoofcare

          Available Now.


          • #6
            If you can, try having your horse stand in a bucket/puddle of water for 20 minutes a day (maybe while you groom?) so he can soak up some water, and hopefully get some moisture back in those hooves! Also, try getting some boots and taking the shoes off to give them a bit of a break, so he can get some growth back. And, if you are feeding good quality feed, but still having hoof issues, try doing a hair analysis to see if you have any big imbalances that are preventing the hoof from functioning how it should. Good luck! :-)
            "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."


            • Original Poster

              THANKS for all the advice..going to show my farrier some of the suggestions-luckily he is open to ideas.


              • #8
                You might want a visit or two with an academic or therapeutic farrier. If your farrier isn't used to using Equithane or other high tech products, you don't want him to learn on his own on your horse. The vet school should have a farrier who does these things regularly. In our area, there is a farrier practice called Forging Ahead. They work with the vet school and can do all kinds of special shoes. They don't generally provide routine shoeing, so most of their day is spent doing glue ons, custom shoes and other special work. They should also be able to tell you if your horse can go barefoot with hoof boots.


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Jo View Post
                  I think you are overworking him. He needs to live free and fancy trot around with no shoes. Wild horses live without shoes you know.
                  Wild horses die young and the ones with bad hooves get eaten by the wolves even sooner...

                  What do you know about this horse's training program?

                  Sometimes the branches of the shoe can be set shorter.
                  The cavallo boots idea for turn outs seems good too.
                  Keratex could help.
                  What I've heard regarding glue-on shoes is that it is not really good for the hooves, prevent them from 'breathing'...it is like putting fake nails on all the time, not really good!
                  I use Forshner hoof packing and had really good result on really hard dry hooves.
                  There is plenty of solutions you can try, just need to figure out what works for you particular horse and situation!
                  ~ Enjoying some guac and boxed wine at the Blue Saddle inn. ~

                  Originally posted by LauraKY
                  I'm sorry, but this has "eau de hoarder" smell all over it.
                  HORSING mobile training app


                  • #10
                    Ive been stuggling this summer to keep shoes on one of my TB's. A farrier told me that it's not so much that the hoof is dry, but that it goes from damp (in the early am from dew) to dry, to damp, to dry etc.

                    Keeping my horses off the morning dew has been soo helpful.

                    Is there any way you could do front clips instead? One of my boys stomps and flies violently and is missing chunks from the sides of his feet...farrier put clips on the front and its working great!

                    Good luck. All of the farriers ive talked to said the feet should look better in Oct!!
                    Charlie Brown (1994 bay TB X gelding)
                    White Star (2004 grey TB gelding)

                    Mystical Moment, 1977-2010.


                    • #11
                      I've been very impressed with a supplement called Kombat Boots. It is a yeast based product. My mini was resected back in May. 3/4 up the right front, 1/2 up the left front. 4 months later and the resection is just about grown out - a process that should have taken closer to 9 months! I also put my mare on it for her thin soles. I have NEVER seen a product put on foot like this does. Spirulina comes very close, but the Kombat Boots has improved both mares's feet tremendously. (it also has helped my mare improve her overall muscle too!)

                      I also agree with trying to soak the feet some.

                      There is also a topical called Contender made by Kinetic (the people who make Conquer). I have a few jars of it, but haven't really used it. It is basically your old time blister. The Paso people are swearing on this stuff about how fast it makes the feet grow. Helps retain moisture. Apply to coronary band. It contains HA, Lanolin, pine tar, iodine, MSM, amino acids, minerals and vitamins.


                      • #12
                        Putting hind shoes on may help. The front shoes are likely being pulled off by the hind feet and YES, not only can bare hind feet pull off front shoes they pick up off the ground and reach forward faster then the shod front feet, hence they cone down on the hells of the front shoes.

                        Something else that helps hold shoes on poor feet and helps the crappy walls improve is pour-in pads. A shod horse largely bears all it's weight on the hoof walls because the shoes lift the soles of the feet off the ground further so the sole and frog bear as much of the horses weight as they would on an unshod hoof. The thin and cracked walls of the shod horse keep degrading under all that weight. Using pour-in pads will spread the horses weight out across the bottom of the hoof and take some of the load off of the walls.

                        I have seen the hopeless feet of a TB (just couldn't hold shoes) really improve with the use of pour-in pads. She finally could keep shoes on. The farrier also used shoes on the front feet that moved the breakover point further back which got the front feet off the ground sooner and out of the way of the hind feet.



                        • #13
                          Originally posted by D Murray View Post
                          Glue on shoes for a time or two should solve your problems , and allow the foot to grow out and get a healthier foot under him.
                          Agreed on this. I have one that steps his shoes off often. I keep hoof boots on hand to protect his bare foot until the farrier can come. This requires keeping an eye on the boot to make sure it isn't causing sores. Then my farrier does glue ons for awhile until my guy has enough foot to nail into.

                          I would not want a newish farrier working on my problem-footed horse though. You might need to trade up to a more experienced farrier until your guy's feet get straightened out.

                          "If you have the time, spend it. If you have a hand, lend it. If you have the money, give it. If you have a heart, share it." by me


                          • #14
                            I'm not anti-shoe, but please try barefoot!
                            I didn't think my horse (tb/wb x)would survive his first few months without shoes, but his feet look sooooo much better now. He kept ripping shoes off with chunks of hoof. I didn't even consider glue-ons because he overreaches and would most likely pull those off too.
                            I was not riding much in the beginning of this year, so I pulled his shoes (May). He was so ouchy especially on concrete for the first 2 months that I almost gave in and put shoes back on. He also self trimmed himself really short and that was a little hard to deal with (mentally for me lol), but his hooves are getting back to normal size now.
                            It is taking a while, but he fine on grass and dirt now and his feet are nice and solid. They still need to grow out more, but the worst is over. I'm so glad I did it even though I expect the full transition to take about a year.

                            My second recommendation would be Farrier's Formula Double Strength at the replenishment dose (loading) for a few months. I've tried a few others (Horseshoers Secret and SmartHoof) and never saw a difference until FF. There is actually a "line" where you can tell the old hoof from the new.


                            • #15
                              if you are in the D/FW area (there is an section in your profile that is reserved for -location- that you can fill in so that know...) then you might try the prodiatrist at Reata Equine in Weatherford.

                              They have the booties too! They custom make them for ponies.

                              I have a horse that I ride for some clients whose feet really went to trash last year. So much so that we could not get shoes on her. I had to give her 4 months off and she wore booties everyday.

                              You might have to let him be while his feet grow...then get some shoes put back on.

                              also, just a tid bit, my TB could not keep shoes on unless they had clips.
                              He would twist out of them in his stall because he was too lazy to actually pick up his foot when turning...the would just rotate and the shoe would pop right off. Clips prevented this action. : )
                              So don't write off clips...they may help once your pony has enough foot to handle them.

                              good luck!
                              Horses are amazing athletes and make no mistake -- they are the stars of the show!