LONG HEELS 2
Many horses live long and useful lives in shoes. The horse in this case study had reached the age of 20, had never had any lameness issues, and was still being used for hacking. He had been shod from the age of 4. In this situation it is understandable that owners might worry about making changes so late in their horses life. However, older horses feet have the same capacity to change for the better once bare as younger horses do. This horse was sound over all surfaces from shoe removal. His owner has commented "why have I been paying for shoes all these years?"
Above: The before picture shows very long heels, a curved hairline which bulges upward from the pressure of excessive wall length at the quarters, ripples in the hoof wall caused by summer grazing.
Above: The before picture shows how this horse has no hope of frog to ground contact on any surface. Notice the slit between the heels (has been treated with purple antiseptic spray). This is an infection in the central cleft of the frog. The infection is able to take hold in the unhealthy frog, and needs daily treatment to eradicate it. You can see in the after picture that the infection is still present.