Over the many years this has become one of our greatest issues with horses that we see. Improper trimming, lack of trimming (neglect) to overall poor hoof health. Without its feet a horse is virtually unable to walk and it can become fatal. We have had cases ranging from the P3(coffin bone) coming through the bottom of the foot to walking on the sole, rather than the hoof wall, navicular/bone issues, creating lame horses. Finding out what those issues stem from can range from improper/poor diet creating founder to injuries, birth defects, to diseases of the hoof.
Having X-rays by your Veterinarian to establish any issues that can not be seen with the naked eye to finding a qualified farrier are important to maintaining your horse. Someone who knows what a "balanced" foot is may make the difference in life or death. Horses that have feet improperly trimmed can go on to have other health risks from infection, abscesses, deterioration of the hoof inside as well as the hoof wall itself that may make a horse either completely lame or to the point of death.
We, at Horse Feathers, do not shoe our horses. We believe in an alternative Barefoot Horse. A horses heart can only pump the blood to the knee. The blood therefore drains down the leg into the hoof and into the many capsules--laminea. The frog acting as a pump when walking heel to toe, pushes the blood back up the leg to the heart for circulation. The frog can not act as a pump when it is constricted with metal shoes. If necessary we use EasyCare Therapy Boots or similar along with starting to use rubber glue on shoes and Vettec Products to help the horses feel more comfortable.
Only in extreme cases where boots are not an alternative will we consider shoes. Until recently with a case of a horse that was pigeon toed did we have to find a way to support her. We will monitor her to see if this gives her the relief she needs. Having a GOOD QUALIFIED PATIENT farrier is important. We do NOT allow any abuse of our horses. No jerking their heads, hitting with rasps, kicking in the stomach.
If your dealing with a farrier like that---FIRE HIM!