Correcting the Toe Dragging Hoof 8-9-2013
This is Sky, a 9 year old Arab gelding. His hooves had been on a 6 weeks trimming schedule, but he was dragging his toes with every stride which caused the walls to wear into the waterline (non-pigmented wall).
In Sky’s case, this isn’t conformational as the owner was being advised by prior hoof care professionals.
Not doing enough seems to be one of the biggest mistakes I see in barefoot trimming, While, trimming that is taught in most horseshoeing schools is to remove material that should be left and to leave material that should be taken. That method of trimming sets of hoof up for many issues which cause horses to go into horse shoes to keep them from being lame. Either way, we are making mistakes out there that too often costs horses their lives.
I didn’t remove any sole or frog material from these hooves when I trimmed. He will likely exfoliate frog and sole material at some point, but we’ll wait until his hooves are ready to do that and may offer encouragement with our tools to help it happen faster. The hooves ultimately will dictate what we do for them, but we need to read the hooves well enough not to leave material that can compromise hooves and potentially cause injury in the horse’s body.
8-10-2013 Just advised that Sky is being ridden in a clinic this weekend and his movment is fantastic!
Post Trim Picture and Video
It was assumed that Sky's toes were short when actually the entire hoof capsule is long and flared. This wasn't as obvious in person as it is in pictures. Note to hoof care professonals and owners: Take pictures and move the horse before starting the rehab process so you can observe and compare condition, movement and pain.
The number one trimming error that I see every day is being too conservative and not making the adjustments needed to correct his hooves.
My trimming strategy was to trim the walls to the (current) sole plane, the bevel was created and rasping was to shape and complete the trim. That was basically all I did and it didn’t take very long to do it.