Making Sense Of Navicular Syndrome

Concise Guide to Navicular Syndrome in the Horse

One of the most difficult equine foot problems to diagnose and treat is navicular syndrome. While it is a daunting task, California equine veterinarian David W. Ramey sets out to help farriers, vets and horse owners understand the ins and outs of this puzzling syndrome in his 100-page book, Concise Guide to Navicular Syndrome in the Horse. 

Ramey, a 1983 graduate of Colorado State University who also served as an intern at Iowa State University from 1983 to 1984, has been working in his own private veterinary practice in California since 1984. 

Understanding Navicular Syndrome

Ramey starts the book with an introduction, which succinctly states his case as to why navicular syndrome is one of the most misunderstood problems plaguing horses today.

“Certainly, few conditions that cause lameness in the horse are as frequently diagnosed by veterinarians, farriers and amateur observers with too much time on their hands as is navicular syndrome,” he writes. “Navicular syndrome is a headache for everyone.”

The early chapters of Ramey’s book offer a way for everyone in the horse business to better understand the horse’s foot and how navicular syndrome affects it. 

He opens the text with a brief, yet detailed, rundown of the anatomy and physiology of the equine foot. Since entire books have been written about the inner working of the horse’s foot, Ramey keeps his anatomy lesson basic for the sake of brevity and clarity. There are three detailed sketches of ligaments, tendons and bones within the equine hoof that are…

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