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Nail Shy Pony

12 replies

WillowKnicks · 19/05/2015 14:29

We've had my DD's pony for just over a year now (she's just turned 6) & she was barefoot when we got her & her feet were great, did endurance rides on her even & everything fine.

A few weeks ago she went footsore & her hooves had worn right down, so we had her shod. She did struggle towards the end but tolerated it.

Roll on 2nd set of shoes...3rd attempt in a week made today with her sedated & hardly able to keep her head up bless her but STILL wouldn't tolerate it. Farrier said she's nail shy, as she's fine with the trimming etc but can't stand the hammering & it just happens with some horses.

We've come to the conclusion that we'll leave her barefoot & buy her the boots for hacking/endurance.

Anyone else had this & can anyone recommend the best boots?

Thank you.

OP posts:
Butkin · 19/05/2015 14:42

If this happens with thoroughbreds they can use glue on plastic shoes which seem to work well. I know many racehorses who run without being able to take nails. Not sure if they do them in pony sizes but a good farrier can advise you.

Eve · 19/05/2015 14:47

would be worth trying another farrier.

My old pony didnt like the hammering either but 1 farrier couldn't handle her fidgeting while another was able to gt her to stand still.

Bonkey · 19/05/2015 22:35

I have a tb currently barefoot, we are still transitioning but its the best decision I have ever made!

if you are on facebook there is a brilliant barefoot owners group, loads of advice about boots and the correct management to help them

RedRugNoniMouldiesEtc · 19/05/2015 23:00

Some ponies hooves barely grow in winter. If your farrier continues to trim as normal they will be too short and get sore. A good farrier will spot it and stop trimming as often, sometimes only a rasp every 8 weeks is needed, sometimes even less. Our conny cross would have a rasp at the beginning of winter, a minor rasp to balance them around January then a small trim in spring - then back to regular trims. Our farrier was up every 6 weeks for the others so would check them but only do what was needed rather than sticking to the expected routine for the sake of it.

If your pony has slowed for winter it should be growing again now with the spring grass coming through. I would suggest leaving them to grow down again without shoes and be prepared to back off them early next winter. A good barefoot diet is worth looking into as it supports the natural growth cycle.

Pixel · 19/05/2015 23:26

Barefoot horses can sometimes get a bit footy in the spring when the grass comes through because of the extra sugar so that's worth bearing in mind.

WillowKnicks · 20/05/2015 08:04

Thanks for the advice everyone, it's appreciated.

RedRug her previously really strong hooves, had worn right down to the frog & there hasn't been much growth since the 1st pair of shoes went on. I'm thinking that they got softened in our boggy fields over winter & then worn down when out riding on rough surfaces. DD felt like she had a new pony when the shoes went on, she was so much more forward

I will definitely look at the barefoot diet, I like to be proactive Smile & check out the FB page.

OP posts:
Gabilan · 20/05/2015 20:29

My horse is shod in front but not behind as about a year ago poor hoof growth meant my farrier (who I trust) just could not keep shoes on him. In his case I'm pretty sure it was lack of turnout over the previous winter. He was on a yard that very rarely turned him out, which is in part why I moved him. His coat and front feet were fine so it wasn't nutrition and since his hind feet are the furthest things from his heart, I think the nutrition he needed just wasn't getting to his feet.

Anyway, he was on farriers formula, which made a dramatic difference. However, it is hideously expensive so he's now on a cheaper biotin supplement and I'll see how he goes.

Much of the time he's fine barefoot behind but I use Cavallo Trek Hoof Boots for longer hacks. They are absolutely brilliant - four hours across moorland, through streams, mud, over rock and they stayed put without rubbing. He's very footsure in them. One thing though, I think the key to good boots is their fit. Learn how to measure your pony's feet and find a make that fits them. There are suppliers which will loan you boots to see if they fit. But the boots made a huge difference to C and have enabled him to be happy being barefoot.

Gabilan · 20/05/2015 20:31

Sorry, to be clear. I think lack of turnout led to poor circulation and I think the poor circulation meant poor hoof growth behind.

WillowKnicks · 22/05/2015 12:21

Thanks Gabilan, that makes sense as our fields were just a swamp this winter & still haven't recovered, so I'm renting some turnout now.

I joined the FB group & seems like I'm feeding her the wrong diet for hoof growth.

I've also found a barefoot trimmer in my area, who has an excellent reputation & also fits & supplies the boots, so I'm waiting to hear back from her. DD just wants pink ones Hmm

I was a bit gutted when she needed shoes, after doing so well previously barefoot, so I'm telling myself fate has taken a hand & with some proper advice & TLC we'll get those strong feet back.

OP posts:
Bonkey · 22/05/2015 12:48

Feeding the right diet is a lot of it I think - good luck!

Its a great group, full of advice/info and friendly!

Gabilan · 22/05/2015 19:21

When I started reading up on barefoot stuff I was interested to find out that the barefoot diet is, apparently, just better anyway. Apparently with shod horses you miss some of the early signs of laminitis, because the foot is desensitized. Tbh I feed my horse as little hard feed as possible and always keep the sugar down because he can get fat on thin air, bless him.

I'm hoping his biotin supplement works as well as the Farrier's Formula. It's certainly cheaper!

Gabilan · 22/05/2015 19:22

Oh and don't worry about pink boots, Willow. They'll be mud coloured in no time!

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