Over the past 10 years, have you seen an increase in the number of older horses that you work with? What are the challenges you face with these horses? What do you do to overcome these challenges?
I have a few horses I have taken care of since foals and are in thier late 20's and even 30's Stiffness and arthritis are the biggest issues You need to work within the pysical limits Don't hold too high, don't flex too much I even have some I need to trim from the top Hoof cradles help quite a it the horses can lean into the cradle and relax and not on me
I agree with Jerry. I would also add to take a little more time when trimming older horses and have extra patience when handling them. Most of them mean no harm they are just stiff, like me.
I agree with Jerry and Steve. I would like to add one more level of difficulty though, and that is the owners. I find that many are of the opinion that since the horse is old/ unrideable that vigilant hoof care is necessary. just today i worked on a 35 year old mare that had sidebone, ringbone, and suspensory tendon failure with very long toes. there was no convincing the owner to get on a schedule, she had other priorities.
Yes, a definite increase in the older horses in my practice! Ditto with what the other 2 guys have said. I'm finding that with some of the older horses I'm doing that my regular hoof jack cradle is too high for them so I'm going to buy the mini size so they don't have to be flexed quite as much. I also suggest to owners a bit of bute for these horses before I get there. It does seem to make a difference.
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