Monday, April 21, 2014

Storm Clouds

" There comes a point in every rider's life when he wonders if it's all worth it. Then one look at the horse, and he realizes - it is."  - Kelly Stewart
As horse people I feel like we should know better than most that life just can't always be rainbows and unicorns. Well, today we hit our storm cloud and I'm afraid it is a big one. (Yes, I am freaking out a bit!)

This is what Loki's hind feet look like right now:

 I've been researching since I "discovered" this and let me just warn you do NOT google hoof diseases and abnormalities unless you have a very strong stomach. There are some things that just can't be unseen!

From my research it seems as though Loki's hind feet are bullnosed. There was a lot written about the angles of certain bones but to be perfectly honest while I have a very rough understanding of what I read it was mostly all Greek to me.

So the farrier comes out on Wednesday and the Vet is coming on Friday and I am trying to stay calm in the mean time and of course Loki will be on vacation until we figure out what needs to be done.

My biggest issue aside from the worry is this: How the hell did I not notice this before now? That question has been replaying over and over and over in my mind all night. My trainer actually noticed it today because she happened to be sitting on the ground and got a good look at Loki's hooves at eye level instead of from above. But Loki is my horse and I handle him everyday. I pick his dang feet out every freaking day! How did I not notice that something was really amiss. I truly doubt that this happened over night.

And in fact I can't even say that I didn't notice anything. I remember thinking on two separate occasions that Loki's toes looked really short/strange and thinking I needed to ask my trainer about it. But, she wasn't around and then I got distracted and he's never been off despite the funkiness so I guess it just didn't register as urgent. Hello, bad horse owner! His hooves were really hot to the touch today which is a new development but he still seems totally sound. He stands square, he doesn't seem to rest one leg more than the other, he picks all four feet up without complaining. He was sound when I walked/trotted him out. I mean either he has a REALLY high pain thresh hold or something strange is going on.

And just to add a little more thunder to the storm a certain little puppy named Pixel who was spayed on Thursday and has been a very poor patient (read running and jumping instead of resting)  has suddenly decided to develop a fever and possibly an infection. So I see possibly even more vet visits in our future.

Stay tuned...


  1. Oh I feel you when it comes to vet visits, my vet now jokes I'm on his birthday invite list >.<!

    If Loki is sound don't worry too much about his hooves, Oscar has hideous looking front feet but is completely sound and his radiographs and x rays show everything is fine inside.

    I wouldn't fret too much until the farrier has assessed it with a vet. Farriers generally (in NZ and the UK) have more hoof knowledge than a vet, but it's always good to get them working alongside each other for your own peace of mind.

    I started training as a farrier but never saw hooves like that so I'm super interested to hear what your farrier and vet say!!

  2. Blah!! Sending healing thoughts to both of them!!!

  3. Hang in there<3

  4. I'm sure your Vet will have a good solution :)

  5. It's so easy not to notice things like that creeping up on you when you handle your horse every day - don't blame yourself!

    I agree with the above: if he's sound, you're probably ok. It's worth checking out, but a horse's comfort is the first priority in diagnosis for me.

    Good luck!

  6. Bobby's been battling bullnosed back feet for ages now. They're finally getting themselves sorted out with trimming, but he's never once had any soundness issues with them. It seems like it's usually just something that needs to be corrected and you can move on from.

    So don't panic, is what I'm trying to say! ;) I'm sure he'll be fine and you'll get everything sorted out.

  7. Yes those are definitely bullnosed...but they can be fixed with good foot care. Don't panic...things will work out for you.

  8. If he's sound and happy, there's not a lot to worry about. Courage tends to wear down the toe on his hind feet too AND he can grab his front heels. My farrier calls him "talented".

  9. Are you talking about the dirt looking stuff (just assumed it was dirt) on his feet or the shape of them? Wiz COMPLETELY chipped his back toe off (ugh let me scramble and see if I can find pics I feel like I may have taken one recently) late January and the other toe came soon after- they're both rolled SO short right now- talked to the farrier and he said he sees horses do that when they are either are heavy on the forehand (and drag their back feet) or are sore somewhere. I don't think Wiz is sore anywhere, but he has no back feet. I personally think it's the EPM- makes them weak in their hind end so they drag their feet and roll the toes off. I think it will improve as his strength and way of going improves (and I've been considering shoes although I think he'd need all four feet to correct the back feet).

    OK, so I googled bull nose, I guess you're talking about the stuff I thought was dirt? I wouldn't worry too much- correct it, but don't worry, doesn't look NEARLY as bad as the images on google...eek.

  10. okay maybe it is just the shape and not the dirt- GOOGLE IMAGES IS CONFUSING ME haha ;)P