Power Of Trimming - Feedback From Chiropractor
Relevante is seen by a chiropractor (who is also a DVM) twice a year. His most recent appointment was this morning. She had some interesting observations I thought appropriate to share here. Last week I texted her Lavinia's initial findings on his back feet following radiographs I had taken at the end of May. You can review the full thread here Jun 8 #250789
To briefly recap Lavinia's comments...
First, thanks for getting new radiographs as it's been a year since we last looked inside. As it turns out, it was extremely lucky that you were able to include ones of the hind feet as well as the fronts. Rads show that the front feet are hugely improved, really only needing some minor tweaks to get them as optimal as they can be. There's still pastern arthritis present in all four legs but it hasn't progressed. Still battling thinner than ideal sole depth and underrun heels all around but Relevante is now moving soundly so that's huge.
The hinds rads show some serious issues that no one had any idea were present. The only hint that something might be amiss is that the fetlocks appear to be thicker than you would expect, but that could also be just be the way they appear in the photos. Unfortunately, the bony column alignment is totally out of whack and is putting a huge amount of strain on the tendons/ligaments. So now, we need to shift the focus to alleviating these issues using the same techniques you were applying to get the fronts back into shape. The current trim on the hinds is already really close as your farrier has been carrying over the same work he's been doing on the fronts. Unfortunately, there were hidden issues that needed even more specific attention. The HPAs are severely broken back so will need to add more height to the back half of the hoof capsule to help support everything inside and assist in pushing it back up into the correct position. While the trim is taking shape, using wedge pads with frog support inside of the hoof boots will help (know you've already gotten this part in place).
I also sent the chiropractor the June radiograph composite markups for his hind feet that Lavinia did along with the radiograph composite markups she provided in August. Our chiropractor was blown away! Couldn't believe it was the same horse. During her examination/adjustment this morning, she offered the following observations....
1. Improved posture - his topline/back was not hollowed as in prior visits, much more comfortable in his lower back
2. she said..."I know he's not, but he actually seems taller because he is standing up properly
3. "I can tell he feels much better overall, he was much more engaged in the process today and I can see it in his face. She attributed all this to changes made by the corrective trimming process we've been following.
She helped me put together a reconditioning timeline/guideline. I am committing to going out there every other day to hand walk him. (Of course I should mention that with Lavinia's guidance he was slowly weaned off the orthotic wedges (blue/turquoise) in the Soft Ride boots to the all blue orthotics (least dense all over) with periods of no boots at all first. He wears the boots to be hand walked but is not wearing any boots in his stall/paddock and has done fine).
I'll start with 10 to 15 minutes and then add a little bit more time each session. I'm also getting the Renegade Viper boots so i can take him for longer hand walks eventually on the drive and around the farm. Our goal is to ultimately be able to ride and move beyond a walk so that he can derive the benefits of exercise appropriate to his age for his IR and arthritis.
Needless to say I was a very happy camper today. I can't thank Lavinia enough (and all those who have contributed to my boy's care)! I plan to continue with paid consultation markups with Lavinia until his trim on the hind feet is optimal. We're still in process and I don't want to rush things.
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