All natural horse care in the west of Ireland

Chronic Founder
Sunday, 10 January 2010
frontright311209.jpgBaby foundered on her right front hoof over the Christmas. She was going downhill fast. I managed to get a vet out to do x-rays to confirm how bad the situation really was. He also gave her intravenus Bute and left me enough to keep her going for the next 5 days.

I got the results of the x-rays a couple of days later and it confirmed my worst fears. In the vets opinion there was nothing that could be done to resolve the situation.


In the meantime Baby was getting worse by the day.

As soon as I got a copy of the x-rays I emailed them off to my farrier Paddy, Dermot McCourt (an equine podiatrist in Northern Ireland) and Peter Laidley (a barefoot and remedial farrier in Australia). I was desperate to help Baby get some comfort.

I seriously considered having her PTS but we were experiencing snow and badly iced roads making them impassable. I couldn't imagine having her PTS and leaving her lying in the drive for several days waiting for transport to take her body away.

The day after I sent the emails I took some pictures of her feet. I noticed some pink goopy stuff coming from a wound on the sole of her right foot, so I sent a picture of that to the 3 guys as well.

Paddy my farrier called me that afternoon to see how Baby was and to enquire if I had heard anything from Dermot.

That evening Dermot called and said that he had got the pictures and that things were not good, in fact there was only a slim chance that she could be saved, but he would drive down first thing in the morning to see what could be done.

Dermot and his son John arrived at 2.30pm the next day. The roads were so bad that it had taken 5 and a half hours to get to us! I called Paddy as soon as Dermot arrived and he came straight over.

Dermot trimmed all her feet with special focus on her front feet. He trimmed her toes right back and cleaned up her soles so there was no bumps or bars to cause her discomfort. This trim is not to be confused with a barefoot trim but was a desperate attempt to save a horse in the advance stages of rotation, sinking.


He put a hoofcast on her right hoof to hold everything together and to give support while she recovers. Dermot left a drain hole at the front in the event of any abcessing.

Vet has been out to give penicillan and anti inflammatory.

The worse thing that could happen now is infection. The biggest killer of horses with this condition is infection to the bone. 

Paddy my farrier, is an excellent farrier who is very open to ideas, has the horses best interest at heart and will do everything in his power to help horses. But I think the main problem is that farriers are not taught enough about procedures that would be deemed as veternary and regular vets don't study the subject enough to fill the knowledge gap between the two.

Here is an interesting article written by a vet who has chosen to focus on horses and in particular hooves:

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