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This “how-to” article is meant as a follow-up to my previous American Farriers Journal article found on Pages 65 to 70 of the July/August, 2007, issue that highlighted “Five Years With A Founder Case.”
I started working on Refreshing Pause (referred to here as RP) in February of 2002. She was a special horse, since she helped me find ways to assist other horses with similar problems. While RP was not my first foundered horse, she’s the worst founder case that I’ve encountered in terms of capsular damage.
Her hooves crumbled as I started to work on her. After I removed the existing shoe and pad, the pedal bone sagged and was on the verge of going through the sole. Working on these damaged capsules was a big challenge, especially during the first few shoeings when I was trying to build walls and support the sole without adding any pressure. As much of the existing wall was saved as possible — something I generally do with every founder case with damaged capsules, as long there are no signs of white line disease.
The goal with founder cases should be to ensure that the horse bears a considerable amount of weight at the caudal (rear) part of the foot. With founder, the hoof wall at the toe is often compromised and the front portion of the hoof is poorly suited for load bearing. Where possible, trim the heels down to the healthy frog and thus move the point…