Long Toe / Low Heel Xray - Long toe low heel and other stuff.

Discussion in 'Farrier Advice For Horses with Conformation Issues' started by Mary Ann, Mar 19, 2012.

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    Mary Ann RaySteeleDaveHallEricRussellTravisDupreeReed Fan

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    It is beginning to make more sense now. The upright pasterns, with a slightly long toe would add up to pink in the white line. ALso - see how it shows on the Xray he was trying to break off the excess toe wall? And the wedge - mmmmmm.... it just might be working to his advantage too.... if so... How??? I mean he does strike the ground better with these shoes - no toe first landing.

    I am beginning to think I SEE> LOL
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    Mary Ann RaySteeleDaveHallEricRussellTravisDupreeReed Fan

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    double posted same thought -
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    Thomas Opinionated and I know it

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    Aside from the good advice and information you've already received I've been looking at his conformation and movement and can see unequal movement. In particular it looks to me like he's moving shorter and not so freely on his right side and with his fore and hind leg. That and his lop-sidedness may well be significant and it would be guess work to know what was root cause and what was subsequent in terms of back/foot and asymmetry.

    What I do know though is abnormal loading causes ossification and ossification can cause pain and restrict movement and in turn cause muscular atrophy or assymetry.

    I'd be inclined to get cracking with a remedial trimming and shoeing protocol which would encourage heel expansion and some physiotherapy and appropriate work activity to try to strengthen and improve musculature and address the issue of asymmetry.
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    Mary Ann RaySteeleDaveHallEricRussellTravisDupreeReed Fan

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    Thank you Thomas. Yes, incredible info from the high caliber of farriers here. ANd add to it advice from horsemen of your great experience and well, it is really a top of the line go-to site. You are soo right and keen on this horse. He is very tight on the right - circles are bent much easier to the right than the left. His right hind is noticibly smaller than the left and the entire right side is less muscled, shoulder is less open etc etc.

    I will keep an update on our doings and look forward to improvement and more guidance.

    I agree about the root cause - total guess work - he may have been born crooked for all we know.

    ANd your post really ties together all the good reasons why problems with movement is not always just a foot problem or a body problem. It might be also medical and a rider problem or congenital or tack. ANd it is what makes it all much more interesting than a 4 wheeler.

    And more expensive - right?

    I will keep this updated as we go along.
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    Pat Reilly Active Member

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    OK, so your horse is not sound and has multiple issues which have historically caused pain, but which have also been treated. It seems to me that as things are not ideal at the moment that you need to reexamine the current lameness to see what is currently causing the issues. How do you know the pastern issue is still being effectively managed? How do you know if the SI issue is being effectively managed by the shoeing?
    SOMETHING is causing your horse's current issue. Perhaps the issue to be treated is related to the foot, but not necessarily. Perhaps the SI would benefit from injections. Perhaps the pastern would benefit from an arthrodesis. Perhaps the problem is a new unrelated and undiagnosed issue. I would ask your vet for a new workup.
    By the way, I see plenty of sound horses with bruising in the toe. I would not automatically conclude that this is related to his issues.
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    Mary Ann RaySteeleDaveHallEricRussellTravisDupreeReed Fan

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    He is scheduled for accupuncture first (with my Vet). Then if that does not work, we will pursue the SI injection. Vet's preference is to shoe him, work lightly slowly and "correctly" under saddle (no gaiting - work and active them slow, long then short walk bending and flexing and 20 meters now and then - and simple straight lines as well. She wants this first then see where we are. He is not limping on the left hind - rather he is short on the right. So we are not in any need to do a surgical intervention on the ringbone. We have him on the Adequan, Cetyl M and 1/2 to one bute if he seems stiff any where.

    He is a crooked horse. And he had no problem with the foot when the bruising was there - but it adds up when you look at the relatively long toe he had and that he no longer has the redness in the white line with these shoes.
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    Eric Russell Active Member

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    If the vet's preference is to shoe him what are his instructions?

    I'm really getting lost here. Besides needing some better shoeing on the front end. The only other issue is the right hind is short and his hip is obviously dropped? What's going on with the shoeing behind?
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    Justin Decker Active Member

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    It's impossible for a horse going in a straight line to be short in one leg.
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    Tom Bloomer Well-Known Member

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    It depends. In very high gravity situations space-time is curved.
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    brian robertson Active Member

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    You know, would it be rude of somebody reading this thread to conclude, that it might be new horse time?
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    Rick Burten Professional farrier

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    Evidently this horse hasn't read the book....;) Or, the horse is actually short on the contra-lateral front too and its not been Dx'd. Or, he's really not short striding at all.....

    That said, I'm with Eric on this one.
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    Pat Reilly Active Member

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    Was the SI blocked in the first place? was the pastern blocked in the first place? How was the initial diagnosis arrived at?
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    Mary Ann RaySteeleDaveHallEricRussellTravisDupreeReed Fan

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    God, I love you guys! :love: ANd I dont' mean to be confusing.

    Eric, I think what is confusing you is the barefoot pictures are from November. The shoeing we did with the Vet's OK : Wedged aluminum eggbars. He has plain steel kegs behind. All the edges are rounded, no trailers or calks etc that would aggrivate the ring bone. Farrier looked at the Xrays as well. He/we ll felt he needed a little more heel height to help his stance/back at the knee stuff and he felt the wedge would help. And it improved his stance immediately. Not sure we need to change the fronts just yet.

    ANd LOL Yes it was time for a new horse 5+ years ago - and I bought him. But I think I came out OK - I mean I could have spent more and purchased mmm let's say a Totalis and ended up with and expensive lame champion - right?

    As to the hinds, we have not elected to add pads or height to the right hind - cause we think the real problem is back and hip. It might be an easy quick fix to add height to the foot to equal up the hips. But I really am not sure how that will or will not affect his back.

    As to the short stride - if you can stand to watch it - the video shows it fairly well ((y) Thomas can see it.) Maybe next time it rains, I can have him lay fresh prints on some sand to show the short stride.

    Here is the crazy thing about all that you see in the dropped right side and what you can't see in the short step of the right hind: when you warm him up and get him to "bend and flex and move his rib cage open on each side, he will actually bring up his right side pretty level, including his right hip. ANd you will feel him square up under you and move willingly with ease. Not totally "square" mind you - but pretty relaxed.


    Tonight would have been a great ride to show you. Christopher (nice rider) rode him. As soon as he got on - he commented he was really dropped on the right side. And when he began to work him and asked him to bend right and left at a walk, the horse rushed, tossed his head slapped his tail pinned his ears, flipped his hind around to avoid the bend in the back/ribs etc. But he kept him in walk and kept asking for the bend. At first he got better with the left bend - no rush to the left, head low no toss etc. But when he asked for the recipricol right bend, he rushed, tossed his head slapped his tail, stiffened his back/neck etc. After a few patient minutes, he bent great to the left and right and took a lower relaxed frame, licking lips ears forward etc etc. And his right side came up so he ended the ride soft and pretty squared up.

    ANd I think this is the kind of therapeutic work Thomas was driving at (imagine that - Thomas driving:eek: ).

    Still glad I started the thread. Cause what I thought was a cool example of a LT/LH improved with a wedge might just be an upright pastern. I am also glad I added the "other stuff" (even though confusing to some - I sure learned a lot more from you all on those issues. Not sure what an Xray or MRI it would take to get a difinitive diagnosis on the back issue but I think the treatment may not differ much from what we are doing.

    In any case, this is what happens when a back yarder buys a sweet horse that seems "just a little off."
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    Mary Ann RaySteeleDaveHallEricRussellTravisDupreeReed Fan

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    All by palpation. I had no idea the SI could be blocked. Time to haul him up to you???? I was thinking of a cool gaited clinic in PA to take him to one year. That would be cool to hand him to you and test away.

    Seriously - they can block the SI?
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    Pat Reilly Active Member

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    The SI can be blocked. It can also be diagnosed through Nuclear scintigraphy and confirmed by radiographs. Was the pastern blocked?
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    Lclayton Member

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    That's exactly what I've been thinking.
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    Mary Ann RaySteeleDaveHallEricRussellTravisDupreeReed Fan

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    No not blocked - but he trotted sound after flexing it. Well sound for a gaiter.
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    Mary Ann RaySteeleDaveHallEricRussellTravisDupreeReed Fan

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    Like I said, I guess I could move him on - but I am not.
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    Karen Fletcher Active Member

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    OMG!!!!! If you didn't have Holiday, you may have nothing to come here and talk about! :p
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    Justin Decker Active Member

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    It might make him more comfortable and save him from all the pain of bending and flexing while riding until he squares up.


    Ok let say his LH stride length is 3 feet and the RH is 2 feet 10 inches. In 18 strides his RH will be 3 feet behind the LH. It's an optical delusion!! The fact that the horses legs are connect to the body means they have to travel the same distance or he would be going in a circle or falling down.:)

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