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FROM THE HOOFCARE & LAMENESS ARCHIVES
Tips for Hoof Repair Success
Note: this article was originally published in Hoofcare & Lameness.
1. The hoof surface must be cleaned with acetone or ether, rasped to shape, and sanded.
2. The edge of the wall defect should be recessed or undercut with a knife or Dremel tool to lock in the cured resin.
3. All traces of infection and necrosis must be resected. If not, the resin may actually induce necrosis because of the heat generated in the process.
4. Avoid contact with any sensitive tissue.
5. If the corium is exposed, or hemorrhaging or pus is present, treat the problem, shoe the horse, and postpone reconstruction until two or three weeks later.
6. Protect the coronet with tape while you are working on the foot.
7.Correct foot prepartion and shoe fit is essential. Do not put compound over a flair.
8. Be sure that the diagnosis of the foot problem and lameness is correct. It is a time-consuming, expensive process, and clients have high expectations.
9. Beware of tunnel vision. There is no use reconstructing a foot is there is a possibility of bone chips, tendonitis, pedal osteitis, etc.
10. Plan and prepare carefully, in advance. A clean work area is essential.
11. Chronic quarter cracks that are wide or unstable cannot be helped with reconstruction. They require dry resection with a knife or Dremel tool, and two-stage repair.
12. Expensive medial or lateral extension shoes for foals may not be necessary. You can create a wire frame and apply reconstruction material to it.
13. Experimentation with heel reconstruction and sole reshaping requires high skill and plenty of time. A flat sole can be made more concave.
Chris Pollitt introduced Australian farriers and veterinarians to the process of hoof repair by experimenting with the Equilox product line. Among his early clients was Let's Elope, who ran in the Japan Cup with two "artificial hooves." Chris competes one of his high-level endurance horses with what he describes as "permanent Equilox."
This article originally appeared in Hoofcare & Lameness: The Journal of Equine Foot Science and is available for your personal use only. Re-publication is prohibited without the express written permission of Hoofcare & Lameness.
Detailed information on this and many other hoofcare topics can be found in Hoofcare & Lameness publisher Fran Jurga's award-winning guide to hoofcare, "Understanding the Equine Foot".
Hoofcare & Lameness