LAMINITIS

Laminitis is the second biggest killer of horses in the world. Treating laminitis is always challenging from a podiatry and veterinary point of view.

FormaHoof has developed applications to make treating laminitis more effectively, to managing compromised, painful laminitic hooves.

By applying our FormaHoof molds, we have created a system that reforms the equine foot to give it immediate relief, while supporting the hoof capsule through the natural regeneration process.



HIGH / LOW SYNDROME

Many Equine athletes suffer from a high hoof angles on one side and low heel angles on the other. In many circumstances, it can be both front and hind hooves. This can affect their gait and overall balance all the way up to the scapular, affecting the saddle fit and stride length.

It is fairly common for horses to have uneven pairs of front feet. When the lower-angled foot seems to be the problem foot, most people call the horse high/low or refer to that foot as having under-run heel or long toe/low heel syndrome.

Others will say the horse can’t grow heel, when in fact an excess of heel length is typically being grown it is just growing forward, instead of down toward to the ground.

HOOF CRACKS

Hoof cracks are structural failures in the outer hoof wall, that can be caused by imbalance, excess hoof growth, flaring and injuries. Vertical cracks of the wall may originate from the bearing edge (grass cracks) or from the coronary band (sand cracks), they are parallel to the horn tubules and may extend partially or completely up/down the wall.

Hoof cracks develop for many reasons. Some are superficial, some are serious, and either can be permanent. Inspecting and picking your horse’s hooves daily, along with keeping your horse on a regular trimming/shoeing schedule, can help prevent hoof cracks from appearing in the first place.









WHITE LINE DISEASE

White line disease is the preliberation of the anaerobic bacteria that is found all over the earth designed to eat dead keratin cells. Without these bacteria, the earth would be covered with exfoliated hair and nail follicles.

The white line of the foot can be seen by looking at the sole of your horse’s hoof. The area, that looks whitish between the outside hoof wall and where it meets the sole is the white line. When this becomes damaged, it allows fungus and/or bacteria to invade and separate the layers of the hoof wall. When that happens, the infection can spread around the hoof and up the inside of the wall to gradually “eat away” at the hoof, making a horse very lame.

Treatment options for white line disease will depend on the severity of the damage to the hoof. Depending on the severity and how much hoof wall needs to be removed, this can lead to destabilization of the hoof capsule that can cause potential mechanical laminitis.

QUARTER CRACKS

A hoof crack is the disruption in structure of the horn capsule that is defined according to its location which can occur on the toe, quarters, heels or sole and its depth, superficial or deep, and its type which can be vertical or horizontal.

Vertical cracks of the wall may originate from the bearing edge (grass cracks) or from the coronary band (sand cracks), they are parallel to the horn tubules and may extend partially or completely up/down the wall.

LOW HEEL ANGLED HOOF

Many Equine athletes suffer from a high hoof angles on one side and low heel angles on the other. In many circumstances, it can be both front and hind hooves. This can affect their gate and overall balance all the way up to the scapular, affecting the saddle fit and stride length.

It is fairly common for horses to have uneven pairs of front feet. When the lower-angled foot seems to be the problem foot, most people call the horse high/low or refer to that foot as having under-run heel or long toe/low heel syndrome.

Others will say the horse can’t grow heel, when in fact an excess of heel length is typically being grown it is just growing forward, instead of down toward to the ground.

IMBALANCED HOOF CAPSULE

When the foot is allowed to get out of balance causing abnormal weight distribution, the hoof capsule becomes distorted and susceptible to injury. The foot is well recognized as a common source of lameness and it has been noted in multiple studies that the heel region alone accounts for more than one third of all chronic lameness in the horse as it is the only region of the horse’s body in constant contact with the ground resulting in trauma and injury.

The foot receives the initial forces produced during ground impact, and a healthy foot significantly dampens the vibrations created during ground impact. The heel region in particular is designed for this purpose and houses the structures most responsible for absorbing shock such as the frog, digital cushion, collateral cartilages, bars and an extensive vascular system. All these structures work together in sync to absorb and dissipate shock. Therefore, for the heel to accommodate this task it needs to have healthy and fully functional structures.









NEGITIVE PALMER ANGLE

Negative Palmar Angle Syndrome refers to the condition of progressive heel collapse and its consequences on gait and performance. Treatment and outcome are facilitated by grading the severity according to physical and radiographic features.

While the angle can be corrected with trimming, more severe and complicated issues would normally require more intensive mechanical intervention and patience, however, FormaHoof has simplified this process. A low palmar/plantar angle also affects all the joints higher up the leg as each joint is forced into a more open, extended, position than is normal.

This in turn can stress those joints and associated soft tissues, resulting in discomfort or pain in any or all of the joints above the hoof. It is the equivalent of we humans walking on our heels while our toes are elevated, which is virtually guaranteed to cause aches and pains in the ankles, knees, hips and lower back.