Thursday, April 23, 2009

Hooves, and a possible abcess, uhg....

Yay! I spent 3 hours out in the barn yesterday with Easy and Mickey. I touched up Easys feet again its been almost 3 weeks since I trimmed her last and Meghan was complaining that she was a little trippy at the last drill practice, and we cant have that during drill! She was longer that I thought she would be, I only rasped her toes and heels a little though. These are 24 year old legs! Other than a few scars she has no lumps or bumps or stress breakdown of her legs, that is why she is still going at 24!!!

And her pretty front feet after I was done, she has always had bad quarters, straight up and down and they always break out, they are a lot better when I am good about keeping her feet up!! go figure LOL

She looks like an old moldy moth eaten horse right now LOL between all the sweat from being worked and shedding and her rain rot, well she is an old moldy moth eaten horse LOL She sheds in patches and there is not much hair under where she has shed yet, she has thin hair anyway, see just behind her elbow? thin hair, I brushed her all out and shedded her out more.

Grass? grass? grass? LOL I took her out and let her graze in the yard for 15-20 min, you would have though she was starving the way she was chomping down the grass!!

And the other old mare, I never thought she would have the problems she has been developing over the last year or so. Here are her embarrassingly long front feet, before I trimmed her. Dont really look that long do they? But she has tiny feet.

And this, she didnt want to put weight on her left hind for very long, hmmmm whats going on here? I didnt find a lump or bump or swelling from the hip down, a little tiny bit of heat maybe in the hoof, hmmm and she is toe pointing when she walks, only putting weight on the toe. Although she would put all her weight on it to rest her other foot for a short time.

Fat pot-bellied old mare LOL, she is 20 now.
You cant really see it in this pic but for some reason last spring her knees just blew up for no reason. She wasnt being ridden and just a pasture pony, she has bursas on both front knees now and is on and off lame on them. What to do with the lame fat old mare LOL I think that it is arthritis and age though. She is starting to show her age.

I was hoping this would show you more than it does, the front of the hoof is rounded, some signs she has been favoring the other foot for awhile. This mare is so stoic about pain, when I went to catch her, she didnt want to be caught, until I got grain LOL and she was not limping when I went out to catch her!

This is how much came off of her front hooves, I took about a quarter inch more from the toe, yes she was really long. A lot longer than I like to let her get .

Jessie with the toe clipping, dogs so love to eat the trimmings LOL.

These round withers are why she has always been difficult to fit with a saddle, she is really wide through the shoulder blades.
She is slicking off really nice though, I didnt get a lot of hair off of her.

The bottom of the right front after the initial trim, still some more work to do here. She has stayed nice and wide in the heels since I have kept her barefoot. She grows a lot of heel in the front, always has. I have been trimming her feet since she was 2. Geez thats a long time LOL 18 years Wow.

And all trimmed, see she does have little tiny feet, she wears a 00 hind shoe on the front.

Everyone always thinks she has cute pretty little feet, I much prefer Emmas big round thick walled feet than these, Mickey has thin walls and like I said grows a lot of heel on the front, although her back feet are pretty good.

This is that right hind again, see the flare on the outside, this tells me she has been really favoring the left hind, there was not much growth on this foot either, she let me pick it up and clean it out, but thats all I wanted her to do. You can see the toe is bulgy and polished too. I just wanted to show you all this so you know what to look for signs in your own horses. I didnt trim this foot at all, it wasnt even a half inch long. She wouldnt have let me hold it up that long anyway.

Now I have to figure out what to do about this sore foot, there is not enough heat or anything to think that break out of the abscess is imminent at all. The only thing I felt maybe was a little tiny bit of squishyness on the coronet on the inside, so I will keep a close watch on her, nature will have to take its course unfortunately. I will soak it and use some icthamol when it does some changes.

She is such a pretty black bay in the spring and she already has dapples, they didnt show up very well, she is always so shiny reflective when I take pics of her in the sun.

Grass! grass! grass! LOL

I shaved her bridle path, ears and legs too while I had her in.

And the aftermath of two horses exploding in the barn LOL

We will wait and watch on Mickeys foot.

And Tuesday we had a friend come down with his big pretty orange Kubota and till up the garden area! So now we have to plant!! I want a garden this year, I missed my Zuchs and squash and I want green beans and so much more LOL But that is another post!


  1. Do let me know what happens with the other mare's sore foot. Poor girl!

  2. You are one tough cookie , trimming your own ! .Hope it is just a simple abcess.

  3. Well an abcess is how she is acting, so I am going to watch her close and get some epsom salts and some ichthamol, yecky stuff, LOL and see if we cant hasten it a little. The ground has been getting hard and soft, and she had some little tiny rocks in the white line of a different foot, so its probably like a gravel abcess and will work its way up.

  4. Thanks. This was an informative post. Now I understand what flair means, what it looks like, and what may cause it.

  5. Can you explain the flare thing a little more? My horse has a hind hoof that flares a little like farrier has never said anything and I haven't thought to ask but now I'm curious! Thanks! :)
    It does sound like Mickey has an abscess by the "pointing" pf the hoof. After going through that with my horse (he could barely walk!) now I would just start soaking it and see if I could get it to burst out. Because I didn't know his was an abscess for sure until the vet came, she ended up taking off the shoe, finding the abscess, and dug it out a little until it oozed. Fun!

  6. PG flare is a big thing with barefoot trimming, they usually take it all off. Tell you what, I will ask Pat Wagner, I bet she will have a better answer for us, I know what it is, but I dont have the best of explantions for it. I am not a farrier, my dad was and taught me a lot, the rest is just self taught. I will see what Pat says.

  7. We have an explanation from Pat Wagner on what "flair" is over at her blog
    Rainer hoof recovery
    which is in my blog role above.

  8. I'm impressed that you trim your own horse's hooves. It seems quite a few people do that these days. I'm still basically clueless about hooves, besides picking and cleaning them out and getting the farrier to come every 6-8 weeks. lol!
    I imagine that Ibuprofen is your friend, too? My back aches after just picking the hooves out. whew!

    I hope Mickey's hoof is ok soon. Your horses are so beautiful :)


  9. Yes, Lisa, I do get really sore, but take tylenol as Ibuprophen and I dont get along, at least my stomach doesnt LOL I started trimming when I was around 12 years old and my dad caught me out rasping off my horses feet so I could ride him LOL he said I may as well learn to do it right! and I have been trimming my own ever since. My dad was a farrier when I was young.

  10. Hi Red, What the heck is a Steer Daubing Team. Lots of riders! Very cool.

    In looking at your 24 year old mare's feet, I would guess that it is the long heels that is causing her issues for the most part. If you took her heels down where they should be, her toes would appear way longer than they do now. Tall heels make the toes look shorter.

    The second mare with that flare, that could be caused by the favoring of her other foot as you suggested, but then I've seen it on horses who aren't favoring the other foot. I work very hard to trim that off because it will just keep dragging the horn tubules around to the side as it's doing here.

    You mentioned that she probably couldn't hold it up. One suggestion have is to boot that sore hind in the Soft Ride Comfort boots or pad it some how so you can work on that flared hoof.

    You also mentioned in your comments over on my blog about the Trifecta. You're right, that's going to take about 6 weeks before you'll start to see any changes.

    And one more question, you said you need to get Pete back out. The Pete? As in Pete Ramey? Wow!

    Very good trimming work!! I'm impressed!

  11. I think my back has actually gotten stronger over the years of trimming. So many people think they can't do this work because of their back, but I have arthritis in my spine and it's actually helped me to strengthen it. Although after about 6 or 7 horses, my lower back will start talking to me and I have to start taking breaks at that point, or quit for the day.

  12. Hey Pat, yep I have Petes book "Making Natural Hoof Care Work for You" it is really good I am impressed by the wealth of info and photos!!

    Steer daubing LOL looks like a lot of fun LOL
    Daubing is kinda like roping without a rope, instead of a rope they have a 4' stick with a tennis ball on the end that they dip in mustard, then they run the calf throught the chute and you nod and the gate is opened and you chase the calf with your stick and try to mark or daub it with the mustard, it great fun to watch!! There is a barrier just like in roping, and you cant break it or you get a 10sec penelty.Oh the other difference is all the riders form a hazing line on the side, and they use one wall. It has been really hard for me to get any decent pictures of it because they move so fast and show up as a blur on my digital camera. A couple of my older post show a little about it.

  13. Pat, I came to the conclusion that the flare on my bay mare was from favoring it because she normaly does not have that much, and there wasnt any on other foot, and there really isnt any on the inside, she is better today, still sore though but walking on it.


    Here is the link to my last Steer daubing post

  15. Mickey was sore and limping for two days and now she seems back to normal, crazy horse, I cant find where an abcess would have broken out.??

  16. pretty cool stuff here thank you!!!!!!!


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