Like me, you may have thought the days of obsessing over Tristan’s right front hoof were over.
That goddamn foot is like a bad penny. It always turns up again, at the moment you are least able – emotionally, intellectually, financially – to cope with it.
Where are we now?
Well, you may remember that late last fall, my farrier suggested that we shoe Tristan for a few cycles to support the toe on that foot. He thought the hoof needed additional support for an area of weakness at the toe that was directly in line down from the scarring on the coronet band/surgical site. So we shod him. He was happy and sound, etc., but I was hemorrhaging money.
About eight weeks ago, we took him out of shoes and he went back barefoot. I did some preventive treatments with White Lightning and Durasole to try and head off any problems, and he held beautifully sound and happy right through.
Except, at his last trim, the farrier took out a LOT of that toe. A big hole. And the other day he called me over and had a long conversation with me. He thinks that because of the scar tissue leftover from the abscess, Tristan will never grow that toe right again. and the mushy spot on the sole will just always be there. And he needs shoes full-time: not for support, but to hold in place a pad that will mostly prevent anything from getting into that hole. Barefoot, he’s worried that it’s just going to get infected constantly, and possibly even progress to something worse.
I’ve never heard of a horse unable to grow sole in one specific part of the foot. And he did so well for so many years. I’m worried there’s something deeper going on, and I don’t want to just cover it up with a shoe until I have a better answer.
In the meantime, I’m going back on a White Lightning & Durasole regimen, and I ordered some hoof packing that should last a few days at a time to try and keep things out of it. I’ve emailed the vet and we’ll start yet another round of “what in the hell is going on now?”
Anyone have any ideas on what might be going on? Part of my brain wonders if it’s just really weird white line disease? But then shouldn’t it have cleared up with the things we’ve done so far?
He’s sound and comfortable, at least, but god damn it I wish we could move on.