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Soles after trim
Soles after trim  
Soles now
Soles now  
QUESTION: Help! My mare had her normal trim on February 13th. Over the next few days she increasingly became more visibly sore and uncomfortable to the point she was shifting her weight back and forth, had heat in her pasterns and hooves and was obviously in pain just moving around in her stall. I tend to be a bit over reactive with my horses so I waited 4 days before I contacted the farrier to advise him and inquire if he may have possibly trimmed her a bit too short.

His email reply:
"Could have trimmed her to short, but don't think so. She still had foot left. She did have a little blood in her white line. Wasn't bad, but she could be early stage of founder. Try soaking her feet in cold water and cut her food in half for the rest of this week. Blood in the white line along with serration of the white line is early signs of founder. She had blood but no serration. If it is early founder cutting her rations back and soaking her feet will make a difference by the end of the week or sooner. If I did cut her to short it will just take time for her feet to grow back out. Guessing a week or two.”
I was shocked and completely unaware of this information and very upset he did not share this with me during the appointment while I was there holding her for him to trim. When I inquired further about the blood in her white line, this was his email reply:

His email reply:
“I saw the blood in the white line of both fronts, across the toe area. Didn’t say anything cause I thought it was probably bruising from her toes being so long, but in cases of early founder it is much more noticeable after a trim or shoeing. If it’s not caught then it usually isn’t noticed until it’s too late and the horse comes up lame. It would only show up if she is starting to founder. Founder can manifest overnight. Sound one day, lame the next.”

This is when I jumped on line and began to research founder and learned if you suspect founder/laminitis you should contact the vet within 48 hours.

My mare is in great shape, had just made a comeback from a knee injury self-inflicted during turnout, not overweight and prone to ulcers so we do not feed any grain. Her feed schedule consists of the following;

1 Flake Alfalfa Hay
2 Flakes Timothy Hay
1 scoop excel
1 scoop flax seed
1 cup of rice bran
1 cups alfalfa pellets)

2 Flakes Alfalfa Hay
1 Flake Timothy Hay
Supplements: 1,200 pound dose of Horse guard (2 scoops)
2 scoops of excel
1 scoop flax seed
1 cup rice bran
1 cup alfalfa cubes

We cut her back to 2 flakes of Timothy and nothing else and began soaking all of her feet in ice water 15 minutes twice a day for the next 2 days and bedded her stall with 3 bags of shavings to help cushion her feet. On day 2 she had no heat in her hind feet so only resumed soaking the front two.

We had the Vet out on February 19th and was advised he does not have laminitis and she was simply just trimmed too short and the red we see is an old bruise from 4-6 months ago that has just worked its way down. He took a little of her heel off to make her more comfortable, advised us to bute her twice a day for the next 10 days, reviewed her feed and had us resume her normal feed schedule.

March 3rd was her first full day off the bute and she is right back where we starting….she is visibly uncomfortable, grumpy, some heat in her front feet and limping, to somewhat stumbling if we take her out of the stall.

We soaked her feet in ice water for a few days, the heat subsided, digital pulse was normal so we have just been soaking her timothy and hand walking her and adding a bit of turnout into the arena as she improved.

She is still visibly lame as of last night. We have been hand walking her and turning her out in the arena for a short periods of time daily. Still soaking her timothy but no other change to her diet. She was showig improvement daily so we trotted her around and she looked great so I began lunging her for short periods every other day last week, but she began limping visibly again this weekend. Hand walked her the past 2 nights. Scrubbed down her feet and took new photos....her feet show visible changes. I am concerned a bit though as the whiteline area was very soft an seems wider than before. When I scrubbed the bottom of her feet cleen and she seemed uncomfortable with this. See photos I am posting next.

I need feedback...was she trimmed too short…or does she have early signs of laminitis? I will post photos of her feet for review.

Thank you so much for all your feedback in advance!


Hope you,re doing well...Outside of your horse problem !!
First of all, Just relax and I'll walk You thru what I see.

Pics are good and NOT alot of problem !  REMEMBER...I'M looking "thru the the window"
on this, I could be "spot on" if I was there. Your feed is FINE...DON'T starve a horse
on laminitis. Nutrition is the "Key" to everything !!
DO NOT FORCE EXERCISE !!  NO heavy walking, lunging !!  WE have NO way of knowing how
much the horse is hurting or damage WE can be doing unless they come up head-bobbing lame.

The hooves looked like they were trimmed too short and allows for the coffin bone to
be too close to the ground surface.Not enough "solar depth" as we say.
There ARE basically 8/10 different ways a horse can become Laminitic #inflammation of the
laminae#AND it's NOT always the "kiss of death" properly handled !!!

The Vet # gave Bute# Great for inflammation, and makes the "client feel better than the horse"
till it wears of and soreness again !!  Even after 48hrs, radiographs should be taken, a
vasodilator given and only lite dose of bute/NAIDS given at night so the horse can rest,
but during the day, needs to be monitored to see the progress. I have most of the Vets I work with put mineral oil down them to help wash the endotoxins out of the gut.

Alittle too late on some things and missed.

GET GOOD radiographs, Go to and find a Qualified Farrier in
your state and area OR ask a good equine veterinarian who they prefer !!
You may have to have front shoes put on for awhile for "comfort and support of the coffin bone"
AGAIN... GOOD VET...GOOD FARRIER !!!  KEY to success...

Best To You !!!
Joepaul Meyers,CJF

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

White line close up
White line close up  

White line close up 2
White line close up 2  
QUESTION: Joepaul,

Thank you so much for the quick response!   I appreciate you. :)  I will check out the website you provided in hopes of locating a local farrier and will call around to schedule a vet for some radiographs.  Should I stop hand walking her daily?  I normally take her out for 10-15 minutes of casual walking in the arena.  The arena has hogs fuel footing and is the softest area.  

As for the widening and softness of the you feel this is a combination of laminitis and whiteline disease?  Should I start any kind of treatment for it?

She does not head bon unless she steps on a small stone or clump of hardened dirt....she does limp more visibly in a smaller turn and on the concrete isle way from the stall to the arena.

To keep her comfortable I was thinking about purchasing a pair of sift ride boots from,  Any feedback on this?

Thanks Again!

Hey Hollie... Continue to hand walk her 20/30mins a day is good for her
"mind" !!  She (according to the pics, does not have White Line disease).
You Don't know IF she has laminitis unless she's radiographed.
Could be just too short & NO depth between corium of the sole &
Coffin bone aka: solar depth".
Wait on the Vet & don't spend any extra money.
Also... You are not now, but in the future, Never let her have "sweet
Feed, corn or Nothing high in carbs !!!!  In can induce it again !!
Thanks !!


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Joepaul Meyers,C.J.F.


With over 40yrs. as a Certified Journeyman/Master Farrier, I have taught at the Univ.& Trade School levels. My specialty is Veterinary Farriery, Lameness and Therapeutic shoeing.

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