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A Pennsylvania farrier was working with a mare and came across a frog unlike any other he’d ever seen before. He turned to the American Farriers Journal’s Web site message board, Farriers’ Forum, for help.
Q: I recently came across a mare with front frogs that had the consistency of Jell-O. They were mushy, soft and felt like they were filled with fluid.
They were sensitive to the touch. I trimmed, but stayed away from the frogs. The back frogs were normal.
I’d like to know what and why this is? Can or should something be done about this?
— Ron, firstname.lastname@example.org
A: Ron, what is the terrain and climate where this horse is located?
I live in a very arid climate, but periodically have seen a similar condition in late winter when the feet tend to be a bit moist. You may have a more serious condition occurring, but we’ve had success using Venice Turpentine to firm up the sole and frog.
— Nate Allen, email@example.com
Q: Nate, it’s spring here in Pennsylvania. When the horses are outside, they are in very wet, soft ground. The owner keeps the horse on dry shavings when it is inside.
This mare is also in foal, due in only weeks and vitamins are being given. Can this have something to do with the change in the frogs? I do find it funny that only the front frogs are problematic. The back ones are normal.
The owner has another horse…