Saturday, March 20, 2010

Hooves and a blast of cold

We had a big blast of air come in as it likes to do on the weekends when it would be nice to ride.

Not that I'm bitter. Sigh.

The blast of air came in in the wake of an early morning, beautiful, ferocious thunderstorm. One lightening strike cracked through the sky so close that the lights went out, woke up our oldest (the youngest can sleep through anything), and now all our clocks are flashing.

Today is my day to feed, but I got a call from the BO saying that it was so miserable she'd take care of it, since she needed to check on all the horses anyway.

I did brush Lily and Cibolo and walked them around the rocky area to see how their hooves were feeling.

Cibolo was a bit more ouchy than Lily.

I also took a few pictures of hooves, but I need hoof picture taking lessons, apparently.

This is Lily's Left Front with the plasticy goo that the farrier put on.

Here's the more troublesome Left Rear on Lily. See that terrible crack? You can't tell from this angle but it actually bulges out - it looks like there was an abcess that came out of her HOOF!

Do you think that might have been causing her to be heavy on the front end for the last month or so?

Every other picture I took was really bad. So I'm going to try to wash all the hooves off, get an assistant, and try again.

Here's my question for the day. What is the process for toughening up feet? Just hand walking on rocky terrain? I really don't want to ride with their feet being tender.

Advice is welcome...

Hope you rode today...


Unknown said...

That crack looks like an abcess that broke at the hairline and has since grown down. If you figure a horse's feet grow .25 to .5 inch/month, you can track back to estimate about when it broke.

One thing you can do to toughen and improve feet is to put round pea or river gravel in their pens. That's pretty expensive though and not something I would do in a place I didn't own!

Generally, it just takes time. I was amazed at how quickly Brillo adjusted though I expect to always ride him in boots.

It's hard to say if Brillo was actually colicking or if it was a case where his intestine was entrapped by his spleen. I'm just glad it was resolved without surgery and he will come home tomorrow!


Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Yikes! The storm sounds like it was scary....even though exciting, too. But that hoof crack looks worrisome. Is it closed up now and healing?

Apache needs to have time to toughen up here hooves as she spent all her time on a soft grass paddock before we bought her.

Baby Doll started off a little tender because she was mostly ridden in the arena and round pen before I bought her.
After a few months climbing up and down the hills in our paddock and pasture, along with all the rocks, gravel and uneven surfaces....her feet were as tough as the boulders that call our land home.

Good luck!

Leah Fry said...

We had rain all day, then it turned to snow last evening. Looks like the sun is coming up and it may all be gone today. Yay, more mud. I'm sure the grass is liking it.

Anonymous said...

Scary storm! We get a lot of those in the spring, although we usually don't lose power (underground wires). We have lightening protectors on our house and the barn - our terrain is completely open.

I know very little about hoof stuff - maybe Mrs. Mom would have a thought if you asked her?

allhorsestuff said...

Oh My! That storm sounded bad!
Nice of your barn owner to take on the day for you too.

Well "Mrs Mom"

would have the best advise probably ...but... my experience having a Thoroughbred, not known for good hooves, has been interesting.
I feed LOW to NO sugar based feed, though I do feed whole Oats(4 C a day)The Pea Gravel really worked well for us last mudd and it does massage the sole making a nice callus.
Pantz, my sissy's Appy never will have good hooves..she is tender al the time..had a slight repreve when I had her on the Pea gravel for a year..but normally- super tender!

"Horse Journal" ( if you buy one horse type mag-this is the one!)
They JUST did a "HOOF PRODUCTS" study-MARCH 2010 Volume 17 Number 3-
and I also found an article on HOOF SUPPLEMENTS- a study they did in May 2009.Volume 16 Number 5.

You can purchase Back Issues- easily
800-829-7887 Customer Service
So is what you feed as well as maybe some external applications and good trims. I have found that a wrong angle trim can really mess up the way they travel and put pressures in the wrong places.

I can generally ride bootless..but some of these service roads really have large, sharp rocks..So not wanting to create abscesses or bruises, I boot!

I tried to take some photo's once of Wa's feet ...turned out do need a handler to help!