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Suspensory and shoeing

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  • Suspensory and shoeing

    I have a mare who, months ago, tore a suspensory (core lesion). She's been on stall rest for a couple of months, but still puts very llittle weight on that leg. Her toes have grown long and I really think that's part of why she is not getting better. How do you all handle a trim/shoeing when the horse is so sore she can't put weight on the leg for any length of time? Sorry to be so dumb about it, but this is the first time in my 53 years of horse ownership that I've ever had to deal with a long-term injury.

  • #2
    You need to get her trimmed, she can have some pain meds before they work on her.

    Might be a good time to just let her go barefoot-I've done that and so have quite a few others when they are on an extended lay up. Cuts down the time spend standing on 3 legs plus why spend on shoes to stand around...

    Your time frame for that suspensory is alot more then a couple of months, don't panic. Some of them stay pretty sore for 6 months or more.

    Good luck with her.
    When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

    The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


    • #3
      my suspensory horse was injured almost 2 years ago. We took off as much toe as possible and rolled it with a shoe on for support. shoer can also pull the shoe heel back for more support. Healed up fine over time.

      make sure her stall is level and flat, fill in any pee holes etc.. you want to keep her on flar surfaces.

      (skipping the pricey vet stuff to help heal faster).. you are looking at a long layup. If there is any heat I would consider cooling it down
      "The Desire to Win is worthless without the Desire to Prepare"

      It's a "KILT". If I wore something underneath, it would be a "SKIRT".


      • #4
        A good rule of thumb... tendon injuries take 6 - 12 months to heal, ligiments take a year to 18 months. You do need to find a way to get her toes trimmed. The long toes are putting more strain on the suspensory. Ask your vet what he or she recommends you do to get it done.


        • Original Poster

          Thanks for the replies. I was even thinking of having the vet out to block her before the farrier starts to work. I've also thought about a wedge shoe. She is, and has been barefoot for a few months now. Unfortunately, she did this about 6 months ago, was doing well, then re-injured herself being an idiot in her small corral. Since I don't have a stall for her, I actually gave her to a trainer friend of mine who has loved her for several years, thinking that stall rest would help her. She's not getting better, so I'll take her back and try again. She does need her toes shorter - I'm sure that's not helping at all. I sure hope she will heal - she's a love and I hate to think of having to put her down.


          • #6
            Good luck with her recovery... As others have said shoeing or trimming is really important. After having a mare with a similar injury who could not stay quiet even in a stall.... sometimes drugs are necessary. Our mare was on resperpine for several months and it made a huge difference for her - through stall rest and early turn out in a medical paddock. She did make a full recovery.


            • #7
              When I was a working student, I worked with a couple horses that had suspensory injuries. The trainer had both horses shod in egg bar shoes with pads both while they were laid up and also when they started back to work and showing. It seemed to help add extra support and was also suggested by both the vet and farrier.


              • #8
                Agree with the egg bars. Trimming toes are key.
                Mid-Atlantic Equitation Festival,Scholarships and College Fair
                November 11-13, 2016


                • #9
                  Give her something for the pain while the farrier is there and have her trimmed - bute or even give her a tranq if she is that bad.

                  When my horse pulled her suspensory we put he in extended eggbars and later long trailers to help with support. In fact she still wears them 3 yrs. later. My older horse had eggbars on for 10 yrs. and he was fine.


                  • #10
                    Based simply on the mutterings of my farrier and the fact that he regularly shoes my horse in wedge pads behind to keep his heel from getting too low (which resulted in immediately noticable improved soundness and carrying power behind), I would say that getting those toes trimed and maintaining the angle at 50 degrees or more would be a really good idea for your horse.
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