Gluing Shoes To Hoof Boots To Treat Chronic Laminitis

Modifying hoof boots to accept handmade or commercial shoes can improve the outcome for chronically laminitic horses that present a variety of needs.

At the 2015 American Association of Equine Practitioners Annual Convention in December, Dr. Bryan Fraley of Fraley Equine Podiatry presented a talk on modifying hoof boots to address chronic laminitis. This presentation was a summary of an extensive paper provided in the AAEP Proceedings.

Fraley reminds that no application for laminitis will achieve success unless the practitioner addresses the underlying cause(s) of laminitis. Once that goal is accomplished, his solutions of modifying hoof boots by gluing on shoes may prove beneficial.

“The modification of boots is already quite relevant to clinical practice because they are easy to use, adaptable and comfortable,” says Fraley. “Comfort is often the barometer that owners use to measure success or failure.”

(Photo: Bryan Fraley) A variety of shoes can be glued to hoof boots to accomplish goals of addressing a chronic laminitic horse.  One simple modification Fraley has used is gluing an aluminum rail shoe onto a boot. He also uses polyurethane shoes or egg bars with boots. To accomplish this, he will place a boot in a vise and attach the shoe using methylmethacrylate (which bonds well to steel, aluminum, polyurethane and wood).

Fraley provided these pros to using modified hoof boots for chronic laminitis in his paper:

  • Can provide comfortable and mechanically favorable treatment.
  • Easy application without the need for advanced farrier skills.
  • Changes can be made quickly.
  • Can be applied with minimal trauma.
  • Cost effective in relation to some glue-on applications.
  • Can be applied to feet that can’t be nailed into…
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