Welcome, About us

Hello and welcome. My name is Sammy L. Pittman, DVM and I am a veterinarian, farrier, and horsemen with a great interest in the field of equine podiatry. My wife and I own and operate Innovative Equine Podiatry and Veterinary Services in Collinsville TX. I offer a full line of horse veterinary care, however my passion lies within the health and well being of the hoof to better serve your equine companion. With so much lameness attributed to the lower limb many horses require an out of the box approach to achieve the success desired.
Give us a call and we will be glad to help you in any way we can. Thanks so much.
I will be discussing different Cases and thoughts from our world with the horse. Feel free to contact us via text or call at 918.235.1529 or send an email to iepvs11@gmail.com. Thank you for reading and enjoy

Monday, August 29, 2011

Backyard mare Project, Updated radiographs after returning to Flat perimeter fit shoes. Please look back at previous Post for serial podiatry style radiographs and venograms

Hello again, I hope this finds you and yours healthy and safe.  Kellee and I have been very busy and enjoying meeting many new clients and horses.   We are now focused on getting ready for Dr. Reddens In depth podiatry clinic in October and hope to see many of you there.  For more information on that go to our website at www.innovativeequinepodiatry.com and click on the Nanric link. 

I am posting some radiographs of Susie Q which is my old faithful trail horse that I have placed back into to a more traditional perimeter fit steel shoe after being in a rockered four point shoe and obtaining 19mm of sole depth.  Please look back at the other post that contain the previous radiographs and venograms.  I will post below radiographs from June 20 when the steel flat perimeter fit shoes where applied and today's radiographs.  A good ole 8 week cycle.  She did lose one shoe at 2 weeks in and I replaced.  Note the toe clip on the Left front.  Notice the loss of sole depth in both fronts and gain of nearly 10 mm of digital breakover.  She did grow hoof wall which elevates digit from the shoe but true dense sole depth, measured from the tip of the coffin bone to the noticeable dense sole, is diminished by a few millimeters. 


You would expect an 8 week cycle to have a ton of sole depth but this is where we are wrong many times.  If you take these hooves and reset while cleaning and cupping the sole you may have as little as 10 mm of sole when finished.  If this horse remains in this similar package another 8 weeks and we are lucky and maintain that 10mm of sole we are still below the healthy sole depth of 15 mm required to have a healthy vascular supply and protection noted on the venograms.   Digital breakover has increased almost 10mm.  This had increased the effective lever arm to a whopping 15-20mm past what would be considered ideal of 20-25mm.  The shorter breakover and self adjusting palmar angle is what allowed this mare to obtain better than adequate sole depth of 19mm.

Also notice the decrease in Palmar angle.  This is the reaction to the lengthening digital breakover and the base of support migrating forward allowing more load and crush to the palmar aspect of the hoof. This will overload the digital cushion and deep digital flexor tendon and overwhelm it's capability to suspend the coffin bone at a higher palmar angle.  I believe the deep digital flexor muscle continues to get stretched and has difficulty returning to home base with maximum contraction capability and cannot pull the palmar angle back up to a more positive angle.  The long digital breakover is antagonizing the ability for the flexor muscle be an affective suspension apparatus and hold the better palmar angle.  At the same time with extra antagonism against the flexor tendon we are adding additional compression of the solar corium below the tip of the coffin bone which in turn compresses the blood supply and reduces production of horny sole and the measurable distance from the tip of coffin bone to the cup of the foot which is the black air space between sole and shoe.  It is this response that suggest to me that many horses should not be maintained in traditional perimeter fit shoes but in a package that will at least maintain a better digital breakover longer in the cycle.  This approach obtained through natural balance shoes, mustad equilibrium, kerkhart comforts, four point shoe, or by simply forging a roll in the toe of a plain steel shoe, will allow better maintanence of sole depth, tendon tension, palmar angle and overall health of the entire limb.

 Reducing these forces should also reduce hyperextension forces in fetlock and carpus (fetlock and knee) and may help in reducing arthritic conditions in aged performance horses if started and maintained in this manner early in life.  Podiatry style radiographs early in life will help determine which horses may benefit from shorter digital breakover shoes and aid in maintaining better hoof  and limb health.  Many times shortened digital breakover is only part of the equation to institute better blood supply and foot mass recovery.  I suggest the above as a bare minimum for maintaining a sound horse.  If we are not obtaining the goals we set forth, we must also consider palmar angle adjustment especially in unsound horses with diagnosed lameness issues.  Susie Q is not lame but is beginning to stumble with this long breakover.  I can only surmise that if I where to continue the flat shoeing approach coupled with a performance career for several years that this will lead to certain pain and inflammation in many possible areas. 

I plan to reset the flat steel shoes and continue to monitor over the next 4-6 weeks. 

This is first flat shoe after rocker
8 Weeks in flat shoe, note loss of sole depth and increased digital breakover.

First flat shoe after rockers



8 weeks in flat shoe, note loss of sole depth and very lengthening of digital breakover and loss of palmar angle. 

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