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Some effects of the shoeing strategies farriers use to correct low heels in horses can actually be detrimental in the long run. Here’s how one farrier recommends correcting this frustrating lameness cause.
Posted by Alexandra Beckstett, The Horse Managing Editor | Oct 31, 2018
Low heels, also called underrun or collapsed heels, can be a frustrating cause of lameness in horses. Further, the effects of the shoeing strategies used to correct them can actually be detrimental in the long run.
So Simon Curtis, FWCF, BSc(Hons), PhD, HonAssocRCVS, an award-winning farrier based in Newmarket, Suffolk, U.K., proposed a long-term solution to the issue at the 2018 British Equine Veterinary Association Congress, held Sept. 12-15 in Birmingham, U.K.
While the terms low and underrun are often used interchangeably when describing horses’ hooves, they do differ.
“A low-heeled horse is one where the digit has a low angle but aligned hoof-pastern axis (HPA, how the front hoof wall aligns with the pastern) and the caudal (rear) hoof wall is not bent,” Curtis explained. “Underrun heels are associated with a negative HPA (when the pastern angle is steeper than the hoof wall) and are long and folded under the solar hoof capsule...”
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