fixing hoof problem, under run heel.

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by WarPony, Jul 15, 2011.

  1. WarPony

    WarPony New Member

    Jan 31, 2010
    Michigan
    So, my main milker, Sage (50/50 Boer Alpine) has a hoof issue that is driving me batty. To be clear: she was like this when I bought her, it doesn't seem to cause her ANY trouble at all. It just bugs me and if it is fixable I'd like to fix it.

    She was bred by the lady i bought her from who sold her to a family with a special needs child who was going to participate with her in 4H. They had her for 9 months before deciding that the child was not really interested in showing her and even if she were this is just not a goat that is going to take you places in the show ring. So they brought her back and a few months later i bought her. They had not trimmed her feet the whole time they had her. All 4 of her feet had ended up curving toward the inside and she was down on her heels on all 4 feet. Anita had already made good progress on getting the hoof wall to grow down straight and over the last year and a half I have managed to get almost all of her feet nice and upright so she is walk in the whole foot and not rocked back on her heel. But the outside half of both of her hinds are still rocked back on the heel, trying to push the heel off to the inside, and basically looking horrid. Her left one is just a little ugly, but her outside right is just awful. And of course this is the one I have to look at when i milk her.

    Like I said, this doesn't seem to bother her a bit, she is happy, active, sound, and aside from deciding she wanted to "forget" how to lead two weeks ago she is generally a lovely cuddly goat. But it is driving me nutty looking at this ugly foot. If I can't fix it I am ok with that, but if I CAN, well by gosh I wanna!!!

    OK, pictures. First, the front feet. These were as bad as the back and i got them to look like this by doing the same things I have been doing to the back feet:

    [​IMG]

    Now the nasty back foot. Outside hoof side view:

    [​IMG]

    Inside hoof side view:

    [​IMG]

    Bottom of the foot so you can see how the heel is under run AND folding to the inside:

    [​IMG]

    as you can see, both toes do it to a certain extent but the outside toe is the worst.

    here is how I have been handling it: I trim the toe short, and trim off as much of the outside wall as i can. I was trimming off the part of the heel that folds inward so the hoof could stay tighter and not splay out as much, but that seemed to make the folding under of the outside wall worse because it didn;t have that inside heel support.

    I'm going to try and borrow a small planer from my FIL and try taking the hoof down to where I can just barely start to see pink and keep that up every few days as the hoof toughens up but I was also thinking it might help if I made kind of a glue on shoe with a trailer that takes the weight off of her heel and makes her use the foot in a more upright position, but I have no clue if that would work or if my horse background and my focus on the horse's feet is just spilling over into the goats.

    So any advice or opinions?
     
  2. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    I'd clip the hair off around the coronet band (so you have something to measure against), and cut as far down as possible (to the pink, if they bleed a little, it's OK) and straighten the sides to match with the coronet band. I wouldn't worry about making it too short, it looks to me like it's going to have to grow into the right shape. I'd probably try to cut the heel first, just make sure it's sole on the bottom of the foot and not side wall and then work on shortening the whole foot.
     

  3. I agree with trimming the hair so you can see the angle the hoof should sit at. I wouldn't trim the heal down more unless there is a loose heal flap which I don't see in the photos. I would take the entire hoof flatter in correlation to the band. I wouldn't trim the toe away like tat or the side wall away unless it is separated from the sole.
     
  4. WarPony

    WarPony New Member

    Jan 31, 2010
    Michigan
    yeah, there is no loose heel flap, but the underside of the heel IS hoof wall, not sole. It's hard to see but the trim is following the growth line on the hoof wall, (except that one spot that sticks out farther along the side toward the front which I didn't notice until i took the pictures, it's where one cut with the trimmers met the next cut and i didn't get it level apparently) it just curves under in back and makes it look funky. I haven't cut back hoof wall farther than the sole, that is the way the sole at the toe has been growing. If I don't trim it back it cracks and flares out to the side and she gets gimpy.
     
  5. I am so glad that she is in your hands and you are trying to make it better for her. I have two old rescue girls and both have hoof issues. One the wall is constantly separating from the sole. The other had the worst elf feet I have seen when she came here; it took a long time and she it almost 100% better now. The girl i have took about 6 months to correct her but I trimmed more each week and she slowly stood upright more and more as the muscles relearned how to be.
     
  6. WarPony

    WarPony New Member

    Jan 31, 2010
    Michigan
    I am kind of obsessive about the whole hoof thing. i think it may be because I have lived 41 years as a horse crazy girl who is kind of militant about hoof care. no hoof, no horse. Around here, people seem to think that goat hooves don't matter, they aren't that important. As long as they goat is reasonably sound, who cares! Well, I care. I'm just new at this, relatively, and want to learn to do it right.

    Unfortunately I have not found much in the way of corrective trimming for goats to help me out!!
     
  7. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator

    Jul 20, 2008
    corning california
    The mid section where the picture shows the yellow dotted lines ...needs trimming off.....if you can look at a young baby goat kid.. you will see pretty close on how it should be.... trim a little at a time... until you get pink... or it is how it should be...

    Also...the toes may need trimming on...be careful not to trim to much at a time...if you reach pink stop.... you can trim just a wee bit off.. every 2 weeks ..if need be.. to get it back to normal....

    This is the link where the pic came from.... you have to scroll way down on the page...to see it...
    http://capriceacres.webs.com/goatcare.htm
     
  8. WarPony

    WarPony New Member

    Jan 31, 2010
    Michigan

    Yeah, that is what I had been doing, but it seemed to have made the curving under of the outside hoof wall worse. So I wasn't sure if I should keep doing it, or leave that there for support to try and push the outside hoof wall back out. It seems the more I take off of the inside edge the worse the outside edge gets. It worked on her three other feet, so not sure what the deal is with this one foot.

    I trim every two weeks anyway, I'm kinda obsessive about feet. I'd rather trim often so that there isn't much change in length/angle from pre-trim to post-trim.

    *edit to add: it's only been about a week since I last trimmed the inside edges of the heel off, and they are already bent that far to the inside. I swear this foot is intent on making me crazy, lol.
     
  9. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator

    Jul 20, 2008
    corning california
    From the pic... I see alot of the inner growing hoof that needs to come off....they shouldn't splay out when you hold the hoof up like that..and that is the part that needs trimming off.....it should come together more...I have trimmed quite alot off that area with one of my Does... to make it flat and bring those hoofs together......
    and the part that is turned over at the heal... needs to be lightly trimmed to get that flap gone...the toe on that one bad looking hoof...looks a but to long ... and should be trimmed to straighten out.....or it is the other side that is to long....make sure both sides are even so she stands evenly... The flap is just overgrown hoof ...like or fingernail...but if left on to long... it kinda fuses to the hoof itself....
    Make sure... she doesn't stay in a damp area...it keeps the hoof soft and it can easily...kinda teak them.... :wink:
     
  10. WarPony

    WarPony New Member

    Jan 31, 2010
    Michigan
    So it looks like I need to go back to trimming off that inside part, and be more aggressive trying to get rid of the hoof wall that is growing under the foot. I've been somewhat conservative but since it was working ok on the other feet I wasn't too worried about this one, until it just kept staying that way and not responding like the other ones did.

    I'm a little nervous about getting more aggressive with it since she isn't lame or sore on it. But I want it fixed because in the long run it will be better for her soundness.
     
  11. WarPony

    WarPony New Member

    Jan 31, 2010
    Michigan
    OK, update. After milking this morning I took a deep breath, said a quick prayer, and went to work on that foot. I got off the part that bent in to the inside with my trimmers then took my horse hoof file to it pretty aggressively to get that hoof wall that was attached to the bottom of the hoof out of there. I think i could have gone farther but I did make some progress. I'll try and get pictures tomorrow and see if you think I made progress or if i screwed it up. :) I think I could have gone farther, I barely even hit pink. I had more sole there to work with than I had though. I'm glad you guys gave me the courage to work it down a bit beyond what I would have on my own.
     
  12. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator

    Jul 20, 2008
    corning california
    Good for you....glad you got the courage.... :thumbup: :hi5: :cool:

    Never feel pressured on how far to cut on the hoof.... you are there with your goat and see what the outcome is...always remember... cut a little at a time...cause you can cut a bit deeper... but if you cut to deep to start and hit blood... you can take it back.... I have hit blood before.. have blood stopper on hand just in case...I had a Doe drip what seemed like alot of blood and I was worried ...but.. it ended up stopping after an while with pressure and the stopper.. and of course.. she had a limp for a few days.... I felt so bad....
    Sometimes we need to get a bit more aggressive to see progress....but have to be as careful as we can... trying to achieve it..

    Yes.. gets some pics..I love to see the progress.... I am proud of you...you did it... :greengrin: :thumb:
     
  13. WarPony

    WarPony New Member

    Jan 31, 2010
    Michigan
    I was glad I thought to use the hoof file, because it let me take off very little at a time. So even though I took off a lot I was able to check between each pass of the file to make sure I wasn't getting too close to tissue with a blood supply.

    I also held her whole foot together and filed both toes together to make sure both were the same length and angle. I'm curious to see what it looks like on the milking stand tonight after she has been using it all day. She was still rocking back with her toe in the air right after I filed it, but I imagine after two years of life rocked back on her heel it may take a while to get back strength to use it properly.
     
  14. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator

    Jul 20, 2008
    corning california
    Only time will tell....she may or may not set up right on that pastern...you are right.... having to walk that way for so long... may of broke her down.... :hug:
     
  15. :thumb: It took my girl a awhile to get used to using those muscles the right way again.
     
  16. WarPony

    WarPony New Member

    Jan 31, 2010
    Michigan
    OK, I clipped her coronet band, i used marker to draw a refernece line (I made it higher than where I want to trim the foot to so that I could use it for a while without having to draw on her all the time. It was a little wobbly because she thought we should be done on the milk stand even if she did still have food in her pan. I started it at the back where the hoof wall ends on her heel and followed the growth line around the side, checking with my thumb to make sure the distance between line and coronet band stayed the same. (sorry these are kinda fuzzy, she was REALLLY wiggly!)

    [​IMG]

    From underneath, I took off as much as I could of that heel that was folding inward. The toe on her ugly toe is longer than the toe on her not so ugly toe of that same foot but I was getting close to a blood supply there so I backed off on that for another day.

    [​IMG]

    The hoof is holding tighter together, but she flexes it a lot and it still spreads out a lot.

    I tried to get a shot of her standing with her leg in the same position she had it in the other picture but since trimming her again she is not standing with this foot as far underneath her as she was. I'm taking that as a good sign because i think this looks much better than it did before.
    [​IMG]

    so before and after one trim, using the courage your advice gave me to push it a little further than I had been:

    Before
    [​IMG]


    After
    [​IMG]

    It has a way to go, but by golly I think it already looks a lot better! I'm going to keep filing it a little every day or every other day to get it level along the bottom but I think we just might be on the right track. I had the right idea, I just wasn't taking it nearly far enough. If you guys have any other suggestions or see anything I screwed up please let me know!!
     
  17. Looks great!