Are you finding that you're not getting the results you hoped for when using cryotherapy? Perhaps the affected leg isn't getting enough coverage.

Cryotherapy is the use of a slurry of water and ice to lower the hoof capsule temperature to help prevent or treat many types of early laminitis. Immersing the lower limb at the onset, or as soon as the risk is known, can prevent clinical signs.

James Orsini, director of the Laminitis Institute at the New Bolton Center at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, says the hoof wall must be cooled dramatically for cryotherapy to work. The optimum temperature is 41 degrees Fahrenheit or 5 degrees Celsius. However, more than just the hoof wall must be covered in order to see the best results.

"In our study, we found that it needed to go up to and include the fetlock at minimum," says the member of the International Equine Veterinarian Hall Of Fame. "Anything that just included the foot did not reach our target temperature. Anything that included the cannon through the pastern, but not the foot, also did not cool the foot sufficiently."

Learn more about cryotherapy's role in preventing and managing laminitis by picking up a copy of the March 2015 issue of American Farriers Journal.