crabbing onto grass

hypopit

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Had new shoes on horse by qualified new Farrier. The horse was previously ridden barefoot( not by me) and the Farrier said his feet were great but he desperately needed shoes. I was going to keep an open mind whether to shoe him or keep him barefoot as vet said he has fab feet. But it's all road work round by me, on gravely roads, so I have always have to have all my horses shod up at least in front.
Farrier said his feet were pretty bruised and he would have been uncomfortable, but I rode him for a week barefoot and he seemed fine, (new horse). So I went for a full set of shoes and he said there would be no way I could ride/drive him barefoot everyday, even though his feet are good. He had been having too much trimmed off previously he said.

So, I thought he will be happy now with a full set of shoes on, but it has been quiet the opposite!!! Eeek. He is such a lovely genuine boy who was great but a little footy on the gravely bits of the road barefoot when ridden, but since having shoes he is crabbing something terrible onto the grass verges all the time, he is really not wanting to go down hill now and will either want to rush or potters down very tense, any grass verge he can get on he will, even trying to get up bankings where he can. I was thinking is it his back so the back woman is coming out this week and I had his tack checked.
He is doing it driven as well as ridden, just not wanting to go driven and he loves that. So I don't "think" it is his back and he was checked by the vet A OK. I honestly think it is his feet, but no obvious lameness, like head bobbing, and he is tracking up fine, no heat in the feet, or abcesses, just does not want to be on any hard ground which makes me think foot.

Can I ask, if his feet were as cut back and bruised as she said from being ridden barefoot, would he not improve vastly with shoes on?

Could he still be foot sore underneath the shoes as such and because I have been doing a lot more with him it is getting worse?

and does crabbing over to the grass and generally not wanting to walk on the road suggest foot to you?

His shoes kind of look small for his feet, hard to explain, but the Farrier never measured him up, just got some shoes on him very quickly, and he looked really upset when they were nailing on the fronts, and he got smacked a number of times by him, it was his first shoeing and he was so good, but he looked like it was not pleasant for him having the fronts on, fine with the back, but overall a star.

I have phoned another Farrier tonight, but just want to get the shoes off ASAP, but I would like the new Farrier to see them as well, in case it is something else.

Any ideas please.
 

Slightlyconfused

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Find a new farrier, take shoes off, get hoof boots and pads and from the sounds of it don't shoe again until you find a better farrier.... Or if he is happy bf just don't shoe and boot instead.
 

Mole1

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Poor pony and what an awful pushy backward thinking farrier. Goodness I'd never let anyone push me like that. Take the metal things off his feet the concussion from them after having no shoes on must be a real shock especially on all four feet.
Boots are a real good in-between for when the spring grass comes through. Or if you really want to shoe just do the fronts.
Sounds like he went from slippers to clogs.
Hope you manage to sort your pony back to being comfy :)
 

hypopit

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Yes, that would be a real pain Bonkers. Do you think I would still be able to work him in the school though?

I had a Farrier a few years ago who said I should try my other boy barefoot because he has cracking feet, but I think we got to the 4th hack and he was doing just the same as this one and was crabbing over onto the grass verge all the time, so I stopped riding him and got the Farrier back out ( who was very good, but sadly moved away ) and he said he my old boy had good horn but his soles were thin, and he could not cope with the gritty roads. The new horse just reminds me of my old boy when he got foot sore, but this one is getting worse with the shoes on.
I have rung my Vet and got a recommendation off them for a good Farrier. If he needs the time off to get comfortable then so be it.
 

hypopit

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Thanks Mole1, I will look into boots, maybe that will be the way forward with this boy, at least for the time being. But I will not be getting him out again that is for sure. Any recommendations on boots from people who use them would be very much appreciated. I've always had all mine shod all round, but thats not to say I am not open minded to alternative ways at all, quiet the opposite. It's just I do a heck of a lot of road work.
 

Sukistokes2

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When I read posts like this I bless the heavens for my wonderful farrier and resolve to feed him cake EVERY visit.

I hope your pony feels better soon OP and that you find a good solution!!
 

Mole1

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Take your cues from your horse re road work being too much. He'll soon let you know. Make sure the diet is as sugar free as possible and you should be fine.

Mine happily does min 17miles a week pretty much all on the road / stone tracks
 

hypopit

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I agree Sukis, when you find a good one you need to treat him right!

Mole1. I used to do 70/80 miles + a week on my old boy and he would need a new set of shoes every 6 weeks, they would be worn right down. I plan to do at least 50 miles a week on this one, all road, as I have no bridleways at all within a 20 mile radius. Would boots or barefoot stand up to that?

My old( good) Farrier who moved away only suggested the shoes off with my other boy as he was near to retiring and I was doing much less with him. The new Farrier said there is no way people who work their horses in his opinion can go shoeless, and that those people who do don't do anything with their horses!! So there was no point pursuing it!! I was interested if maybe with the right trimming in time my boy could go barefoot as he really does have great feet, but he said no.
I will ask the new one as soon as I can get him out, I may ask my vet to come out just to get them off. I should be able to take a shoe off and I'm embarrassed to say I have only done it once and they were bad ones that went on and it took me blimping ages, as they had been nailed on by an apprentice without me knowing, all wrong!! I feel rotten now for making him go, but I just thought he was being a bit nappy, which was not like him without shoes. Poor Lad. And he still gallops down to the gate with a whinny whenever he spots me, I feel terrible now.
 

lindsay1993

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Your farrier sounds rubbish!
I worked one of my ponies every single day barefoot when I was younger, We hunted, hacked, sj, xc, you name it we did it! Gravel tracks, road work, stony river crossings etc and he never ever had a problem. God only knows how many miles we clocked up. So your farrier saying people who 'work' their horses have to have shoes on is a load of rubbish.

If his feet were great then why did he suggest he desperately needed shoes??

I would find someone else asap, if your horse is used to being barefoot then it can be quite a shock to them to suddenly have metal hanging on their feet especially if they are badly fitted.
Your horse will let you know if he's struggling barefoot. Have you any barefoot trimmers in your area??

We are currently having issues with our new farrier, as ours keep coming loose all the time. It's not something we've ever had before. The new farrier insists it's just until he gets to know the type of shoeing they need. He's on his last chance then he'll be getting his marching orders.

I would also second some sort of hoof boots. My daughters pony has them for her fonts and she goes great in them.
 

hypopit

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Hi lindsay

The vet said his feet were great at the vetting, I thought his feet were great, but the owner had been rasping and trimming their selves (oh dear) and had taken too much off I think. He was a little foot sore about the 7th time I road him, so I thought right I better get the Farriers opinion on how to go forward. He said his feet were sore and bruised and he would need shoes all the way around, I think they were sore but nowhere as near as sore as they are now with his blinking shoes on!!!
I could see this horses eyes rolling back when he was nailing on, and my gut feeling was it was due to pain, not fear. There is not a lot of foot there, I think he should have advised me to turn him away for a month and let his feet grow out a bit instead of ramming shoes on him.

You have my sympathies, I had one Farrier years ago who could not keep shoes on any of mine, drove me mad, but he never did any damage at least. Just a pain in the butt getting them out of the field planning to ride and having to put them back again : ( Thats a new one, getting to know the type of shoeing they need??? Don't they know when they assess a foot.? Isn't that half the job?
Good luck with it anyway, and I will look into the boots, which do you use for your Daughters pony?
 

Meowy Catkin

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Would boots or barefoot stand up to that?

Yes. If fully bare, you need to slowly and gradually build up the work so that the hooves can respond to the greater level of work. Boots mean that you can generally crack on more quickly.

Link as it's a big pic, but this is an endurance horse taking part in the Tevis Cup in his/her renegade boots. Your hacking surely can't be this extreme? :)

http://www.renegadehoofboots.com/images/morelli/tevis/processed/cougar-rock-1250.jpg

ETA - it's normal for a sound, working, unshod hoof to look shorter than a shod hoof.
 
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hypopit

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I am going to look into it all, I LIKE that picture. I may go and shove it up that Farrier a$$...:D

Just need to get these vices off his feet for now.
 

Mole1

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Lots of endurance horses don't have shoes only boots. I think if you find the right boots you're away. Diet management is important to having no shoes. The key will be finding out what works for you and your horse.
 

FfionWinnie

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My horse does 70-100kms per week on stone, tarmac and rough tracks. She also lives on a rough hardcore surface. As long as you built it up slowly and kept him on a good diet he would have been fine with the amount of road work you state.

Their feet grow faster to compensate for wear, given a chance.

20FFA695-5993-4732-98BF-DFF1308EF0B5_zps1aldhfoj.jpg

This foot is not too short, it is a perfect self trimming example of what you can achieve by doing nothing but working the horse.

I think you should educate yourself about barefoot feet before saying the previous owner had the feet too short. Since the feet were good enough to be remarked on favourably by the vet, and the horse has had issues since you have owned it, I don't think it's the previous owner at fault here. A week is long enough for diet to affect the feet.
 
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ycbm

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If the horse was sound and passed a vetting, how could the owner have trimmed him too much? Good barefoot feet look very short.

I think what happened was probably that you increased the amount of work he was doing on abrasive surfaces too fast for his feet to cope. If you get boots and gradually increase the amount of time bare on a rough road, he may well manage perfectly.

PS lots of us trim our own, it's not rocket science for most horses :)
 

Pedantic

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Sounds like you need a decent farrier, then "possibly" look at boots if need be by sounds of it.

Daughter had Renegade boots on her Arabs fronts, good boots and worked well.
 
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Dubsie

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The new Farrier said there is no way people who work their horses in his opinion can go shoeless, and that those people who do don't do anything with their horses!! So there was no point pursuing it!! I was interested if maybe with the right trimming in time my boy could go barefoot as he really does have great feet, but he said no.

This is rubbish, my daughter's New Forest was never shod yet all summer would hack on mostly roads at least 2-3 times a week for 2-3 hours PLUS pony club training and competitions. Really depends on the hoof. Get yourself a better farrier, ours is happy to trim rather than shoe. In the summer the pony was pretty much self-trimming from this time of year round to October we always trimmed him once just before both camps daughter used to do and that was all. Pay-off for the farrier was that after that we got a horse that needed shoeing every 5 weeks, and regularly lost them too, plus he started doing half the rest of the next yard we moved to and is still shoeing that yard, so it was worth him just doing the trimming all those years ago!
 

lindsay1993

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I use these on my pony. http://www.ebay.com/itm/Easyboot-Epic-Hoof-Boot-0-/141813157218

They only come in singles as far as I'm aware so they are quite expensive. You can buy them from the Uk too, this was the first link I could find!! The fitting and sizing has to be spot on though or they will do more harm than good. You can sometimes get them second hand on ebay.

I have also tried Old mac's on the horses but found they rubbed terribly and always fell off.
 

Amirah

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My farrier has trimmed a total of six barefoot horses/ponies for me over the last 16 years. He wouldn't dream of suggesting shoes and has in fact pulled nearly new shoes that a couple came with on. He says that they're better off without shoes and any farrier worth his salt would say the same.

We don't ride enough to keep their feet growing fast enough, so we boot for roadwork, I have easyboot grips, old macs and renegades. The new scoot boots look interesting.

The best feet they had was when we had a large area of pea gravel in the field.

Hope you find a nice farrier soon, or do it yourself. Rasping is really hard work though, makes me puff and pant!
 

hypopit

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Had new Farrier out today, she watched him move, studied his feet shod up then took the shoes off to see what was going on underneath. From what I explained to her what was happening with him she, like me, thought foot. She said he had been trimmed back to the bone , which was not done by the Farrier who put the shoes on him he left his feet untrimmed as there was absolutely nothing to take off and he just put the shoes . The really overzealous trimming was done by his owner for the last 18 months. The Farrier who put the shoes on him did not take anything off the foot, said he had good feet but had been trimmed badly and taken right back, so he put shoes on.

The Farrier today said shoes should not have gone on and said the Farrier maybe thought he was doing him a favour as he was sore , but she would have advised me to turn away for a month to let some horn grow back before trying shoes. She mentioned barefoot to me as an option, but certainly said what about boots at first. I said I was looking into boots with the amount of road work he will be doing and she thought that may be the way forward but I said to her I have no idea how to fit them and she said she does not use them either but will put me in touch with someone who does use them for fitting help. I liked her, she was interested , seemed to care for the horse and spent some time to work things out.

She said maybe shoes in the long run, but is opened minded about it all and wants to see where his feet are in a month with some growth on. When she picked his foot up to take the shoe off he panicked and virtually laid on the floor, after she had removed one and he realised it was not going to hurt he stood like a rock. I think the nailing onto the sore feet was not a good thing for a pretty much (apart from twice in his life) unshod horse, I wish the other Farrier had just said badly trimmed feet turn him away for a few weeks.

Maybe the Farrier who shod him saw the sore feet and just thought shoes to make him more comfortable, but because the feet had been trimmed back to the bone virtually it would have been better to leave him and I should have been advised that I suppose.

Do you think I should look into boots now or let him have a few weeks off and get a bit of growth there?

And also, people who use boots can you tell me if they would go on an extremely heavily feathered cob, and I mean thick, thick heavy feather? Would I need to clip him out for these, I would hate to take his feather off. I will speak to the local lady who maybe will be able to advise me on fitting them as I'd hate to get it wrong and cause him anymore grief.

Any advice much appreciated.
 

Amirah

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You could boot him with pads now, if you really want to ride. The 12mm pads are nice and cushiony. The only problem is that his feet will get bigger as they grow back and then the boots might be too small. One of my mares had tiny feet under the metal shoes, and now takes a size up, her feet have definitely grown.

If he's at the bottom of a size band when you measure and you pad them out then hopefully he won't grow out of them.

My favourite boots are easyboot grips, but they've stopped making them :( When I need some more I might try the new scoots. Quite like Old Macs too, and have used them over feather, but they are a faff to get on with all the straps and horrid once they're muddy.
 

curio

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i have worked commercial carriage horses without shoes and they were fine if they got a little short footed or sore i used boots once customers understood his hoof boots and were like you wearing trainers vs clogs - metal shoes they still happily booked us for their wedding and happily told everyone who asked about horses unusual footwear :) height of the wedding season we would do upwards of 50 miles a week on all terrain ridden and driven all bare or booted
 

Gloi

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The vet said his feet were great at the vetting, I thought his feet were great, but the owner had been rasping and trimming their selves (oh dear) and had taken too much off I think.

Don't knock the owner if they were keeping the feet sound, unlike your farrier. Plenty of people with barefoot horses have ended up deciding it is the safest way after having farriers lame their barefoot horses with trims only suitable for shoeing or not being ridden.
 

JillA

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I second Urban Horse, she helped me decide which were the most suitable boot for mine (got Easyboot Transitions because I might need to turn out in them, but lots of people rate the Easyboot Clouds).
I can't believe how many farriers still think the sensible way for a horse is to bear all the weight on the walls, it really should be on the soles and frogs hence the owners rasping of excess wall. Read The Laminitis Site about feet, healthy as well as laminitic, and Pete Ramey if you can. And a good EP (Equine Podiatrist) will help not only with the boots decision but trimming for future hoof health.
 
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