All three horses got trims today - Dawn's was minimal in front as she's only out of front shoes for a couple of weeks. All were good for the trims - Dawn always is and both Drifter and Pie were much improved, although Drifter was still a bit fussy with the left hind and Pie had to take a rest break with his left hind.
I thought that, since they were newly trimmed, it would be fun to take pictures of their feet to record where they are and document any progress in developing better hooves. So, without further ado, here they are:
Dawn, left front:
Dawn, right front:
For a horse that's been in front shoes probably continuously since she was very young - she was a racehorse - her front feet aren't too bad - she's got a decent frog, decent depth of sulci, but is still lacking in sole convexity and her heels are still somewhat contracted - but not too bad at all as a place to start.
Dawn, left rear:
Dawn, right rear:
Dawn's been out of rear shoes for about 10 years, and her hind feed are doing pretty well - decent heel development and sole convexity.
Drifter, left front:
Drifter: right front:
Drifter's fronts are a bit odd - the left front is quite round but the heel is fairly contracted. The right front is very narrow to the back. His front soles also lack convexity. I attribute his lack of heel development and sole convexity to the fact that he hasn't had the opportunity to develop a competent foot - he wasn't ridden much if at all for over two years before I got him and only was on soft surfaces.
Drifter, left rear:
Drifter, right rear:
Drifter's rears aren't too bad - decent heel development and good proportions.
Pie, left front:
Pie, right front:
Pie, left rear:
Pie, right rear:
Pie has amazingly nice feet - good substance and convexity, and nice, broad frogs and well-developed heels with good sulci. Pie grew up on a ranch in Montana and then spent a few years in a hilly pasture in Minnesota with lots of exposed rock, and has never worn shoes. This is a good illustration of the importance of the surfaces a horse's feet are exposed to.
I've just gotten 14 tons of pea gravel installed in the lower end of Pie's paddock - he and Drifter will each be spending a half day in there and a half day in dry lot, and PIe will stay in there at night. I expect this will help Drifter's feet develop heel structures and more convexity. Pie loves his gravel - he has moved his bathroom area out of that area and whenever he takes a nap, he can be found curled up on his comfortable, conformable gravel.
I'll try to document the 12 hooves over time to see what changes occur. (And many thanks to our wonderful p.m. barn lady who helped out by holding hooves.) It should also be noted that both Pie and Drifter are completely comfortable walking on all surfaces, including hard surfaces and irregular gravel as in our barn parking lot.