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Another hoof thread - snow set causing lost shoes?

Could extra traction for a snow set cause a horse to toss his shoes? For context, I had pony barefoot for 3 or 4 years but then had shoes put on him this year as he was footsore and I felt like he could use the support behind. We are getting back into work while fighting saddle fit and my work schedule, so I wanted him comfortable in his feet. I changed farriers when we moved barns in the fall, and he had always held a shoe (he has hard, tough walls, rarely chips or cracks unless he’s way overdue). However, I just got a snow set put on him this last visit (two weeks ago) and he almost immediately tossed a hind. Got that reset, he tossed it again two days ago, and now threw the other today. Both fronts are fine, but he wears bell boots up front.
Could the snow set alone cause him to toss shoes? Farrier didn’t put rim pads on the hinds, just traction. Should I have him wear bells on all four? Seems silly. He’s not losing the shoe by taking wall off with it, the nails are staying in his foot, but the shoe and the nail heads are getting ripped clean off. He does have some new pasture buddies due to the horses going on winter drylots, so maybe the other horses are stepping his hinds off as they play? I’m just baffled.
Attached a link with pictures from today, showing the nails still in his feet and the trim. Took some of his fronts and a whole body in case this is just because of the way he is built?
I can’t keep tacking shoes back on - he won’t have any foot left to nail to!

My understanding is that when you lose shoes in deep footing it’s not that the mud or snow is sucking off the shoe. It’s that the deep footing is interfering with the horses gait so he steps on himself and pulls shoes. So try bell boots behind.

I’d add that the fever lines in this hoof curve down in a way that suggests run forward heels so overall hoof balance is worth chrcking out.

Edited to add: just clicked through to the album. Yes he’s got the long toe and run forward heel thing going on behind. That’s likely part of it.


Okay so hind bells aren’t insane haha. I’ve been staring at his feet for a week and I’m starting to see long toes and underrrun heels too. Which is frustrating as I specifically asked this farrier to shorten the toe as much as possible (he trips more than I’d like).

With hinds coming off, new paddock buddies, I would look at his horse friends running up behind, pulling his shoes. This presuming he is not close behind, with one foot pulling off the other hind shoe.

Getting toes shortened sounds reasonable and asking Farrier to make nail clinches MUCH shorter. If one of my horses snags a shoe, I WANT the clinches to straighten, allowing shoe to come off easily! This saves hoof wall, less likely to strain tendons and ligaments during the pull as shoe comes off. Takes a LOT of force to pull shoes and leave nails in the hoof. New shoes, unworn nailheads, will make shoe pulling even harder!

A stray idea, but is there hard surfaces anyplace in the turnout? An old cement floor from a building that is gone? Do they let animals run into the barn, find stall by himself? I ask this because pony could be stopping hard with shoe-gripping hard surface (borium, drive-in studs) traction on shoes. That stopping hard on the hinds could be shearing off the nails. Which is why there are no nails pulling off hoof wall.

We had a horse standing cross-tied in a cement surface aisle. He was wearing drive-in studded shoes. A new-to-him lamb got loose, ran down the aisle under him and into a stall! He had never seen sheep, but obeyed the “WHOA” command, stood but tightened all his muscles. We caught the lamb, took it away while he stood ready to explode! Once calmed, we usnapped him to take him to turnout, but his second step made clinking noises! I stopped him, checked a hoof and found a dangling shoe! Checked other hooves, same thing, shoes dangling!! He had no loose shoes during grooming. He still had nails with clinches in hoof walls. Husband the Farrier figured horse tightening muscles in fright, which had drawn his feet together without lifting off the cement floor. Force of pull had sheared most of the hoof nails just at the hoof/shoe line. Weirdest thing I ever saw!! Horse had to be reshod all the way around. We bellied all the lambs after that, so he always knew where they were. Didn’t want lambs surprising him again!!

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Yes, traction can cause a horse to lose shoes because the shoe sticks to the ground and the force of the foot keeps going. Could be a combo of slipped shoes and then turnout buddies helping pull the rest of it off. What sort of traction are we talking about, and in what sort of footing? In any event, the change is not working, so I’d either go barefoot behind or get rid of whatever traction was added.

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What is a “snow set”?

Snow set is rim or full pads and permanent small studs set into the shoe. The pads keep snow from balling up in the foot and the studs are for traction on ice!

To answer other questions, there’s nothing concrete out in the turnout but it’s hard, packed, frozen ground. He does stand close behind, but hasn’t tossed a hind shoe before this, ever. I’m guessing it’s a combination of buddies pulling his shoes + the shoe gripping the ground. Never thought about the force it takes to shear off those nails, that’s scary! :grimacing:

I’m having the farrier pull the remaining nails and let him be barefoot behind since we have a 15 hour trailer trip coming up and I’d hate for him to step on himself regardless. I’ll probably have new shoes put on him after the trip, with a mind to getting his toes shortened up (if there is even a farrier out there who will do that - my horse has the shortest toes in the barn :upside_down_face:).

I’d be getting at least a lateral xray of this foot (these feet?) as it looks like there’s a pretty significant negative palmar angle (coffin bone tipped back, less than 0*) which will cause all kinds of problems, lost shoes the least of the concerns.

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There’s pics of all four feet. @JB are you referring to the hinds (no shoes)? What makes you say negative angles? I confess I don’t know much but my gut says his stifle/mystery back soreness/general weakness behind is coming from his feet at least in part, but I have nothing real to back that up.

I keep forgetting that images like that are pointing to an album. And then I forget that you just scroll down, instead if clicking “Next” where I got lost in a itty bitty kitteh putting the smackdown on a potato :laughing:

Yes, I’m referring to the hind that shows up here, major NPA-looking. All 4 feet are not healthy.

The bullnose (convex profile) of the foot is a dead giveaway. The fronts are looonnggg, and not just from being “overdue” if they even are.

Because you are feeling/seeing issues in the hind end, you absolutely need xrays. If your current farrier is just clueless about what’s going on, you need a new one asap.

Oooh okay. Off to do some research but I totally see what you’re saying. These are week and a half out from his last trim so definitely not overdue. We are moving in the next few weeks so I’ll be farrier shopping anyways, but I could probably find a vet to get X-rays and then ask them for farriers they’ve worked with before.
Oh how I miss my old vet who was also my farrier and did some of the prettiest work (and my horses were SOUND with him!). Too bad he’s states away now. I hate farrier shopping!

the thing with the bullnose profile is that takes a good long while to develop - for a full bullnose like this, at least a full growth cycle, which mean the previous trimming has caused it over the last year or so. Good luck!

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