Edited Title: Horse NQR and Finally GOT Vet Involved: Update & Possible New Plan

So everything was fine with your horse until you started changing things up. If it were me I would go back to what I was doing prior to the issues starting. While this farrier might be the best, maybe your old farrier was good for your particular horse. I’d stop using the Equiband for a few weeks and see if that makes a difference and go back to the supplements you previously had your horse on. It could take a few weeks to see if there is any difference. Your horse maybe be sore from all the changes that you have done, whether it be glue on shoes, different trim or the Equiband and different work methods.


Poor Milton! This is a really complicated situation. I wonder…with so many adjustments and switching supplements, what if you pulled the shoes, gave him his good hay, lots of turnout and some time to see if he gets better. I don’t mean stop riding, although I might stop the Equiband thing. It’s almost like you have to go back to square one and then see what interventions are necessary, and what aren’t doing anything, or making him uncomfortable.

I had to look up Equiband…I don’t know about that or any other corrective frame type thing (I’m assuming that’s what it’s for) but you describe Milton as one you have to push into work. That means he resists. That contraption, combined with the fact that he’s an Appaloosa (smart, likes to be asked, not forced) might mean he’s pushing back a lot and making himself sore.

Just my thoughts. I think you’re a great owner to Milton and he’s lucky to have someone so attentive to his needs and trying so hard to make him comfy. Best of luck to you both to get it all sorted out.


Not familiar with any of those, but the second one makes more sense, bands wider on a larger horse mass would have a better general response, not so apt to irritate small areas and that maybe negate some of the desired effect.

Probably each kind has different ways to influence bodies and depends on what a horse needs which works best.

Linda Tellington-Jones decades ago would use wrapping a horse in similar ways with wide bandaging material.
I think her aim was helping with proprioceptric feedback more than whole body balance itself, although that was the ultimate goal.


Have you thought of having him tested for PSSM1? It’s a simple hair test, doesn’t require a vet to do.


I can’t wait to hear what the animal communicator says. I don’t know if I believe in them or not, but kind of wish I had used one to ask my late mare what she was feeling. I find the idea intriguing, if nothing else.

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So just some thoughts reading through:

  1. my horse with confirmed coffin bone arthritis has similar issues with deep footing. He’s happier on grass or a good synthetic material.

  2. that lack of impulsion can be from hind end issues but it can also come from him not wanting to have any concussion on his fronts.

  3. as someone who has done glue ons myself, those would not be the shoes I would be using on that horse. They are not a good choice except in very specific circumstances, and I would never suggest them to someone who is riding or for long term. They can distort the hoof wall terribly and if not done absolutely perfectly can cause serious issues with pinching and glue being in the wrong place. They really are meant for short term use to protect the hoof from sharp rocks, not for long term support.
    These ones are much better for any horse being ridden https://www.easycareinc.com/easyshoe/EasyShoe-Performance.asp

  4. I would be highly concerned about with his previous issues and breeding that he may be suffering from low grade chronic laminitis.


I know you are happy with your current hoof trimmer but if glue on boots are her only option I would look for a qualified real farrier who can put on real shoes?

Your horse should also not be sore after every farrier visit. At 13 you can only fix things so much without doing some damage and it sounds like she is being too aggressive with him.

These glue on boots obviously are hurting him if he is even more reluctant to move the next day. How would you like to wear ill fitting shoes 24/7 in hopes that you " get used to them" in hopes that the pain eventually goes away?

I would call and get them off asap. He sounds like a gem and I would do whatever it takes to keep him comfortable. Blood tests in addition to lameness would be my choice.

Good luck.


I wouldn’t say everything was fine. It’s a long, long, long story. He started having horrible back issues and spasms with the old farrier that the new farrier says were related to how he was trimmed and the NPA in his hind feet. To her credit, since she’s been doing him his back has been fine. He also gets a healthy does of Magnesium (has been for over a year) to help with his back. He’s pretty good now.

I honestly think things are going well after today. His feet are definitely going to be fine. He was happy as a clam to stand and walk and turn and do all of the “stuff” in this AC “energy” clinic thing today. And that was in the arena where he’s usually kind of gimpy. No gimp at all today. Whereas yesterday evening even on grass he could hardly walk. I think he just had to adjust to the boots/shoes and that new sensation. He was 100% better today.

I’m going to try riding him again tomorrow in the field just to see how he feels. I’m going to try to get out there early before it gets too warm (84 here tomorrow, that’s tough on one that has started his winter coat and already has breathing issues).

One thing he did today during the clinic (I hesitate to call it that, but whatever it was) was he gave a lot of big stretches of his neck and back and back legs. Like…BIIIIG stretches that looked like they felt so good. This was all on his own and he looked so pleased with himself afterward.

Who knows? I tend to be a “the sky is falling” type owner when something seems the least bit amiss with my boy. I’m definitely looking forward to the vet visit though. Whether he’s still off or not, I want a thorough exam done just to make sure there is nothing we might be overlooking or to get ahead of anything that might cause worse problems down the road.

Thanks for everyone’s input. I’m still reading it and taking it to heart, I promise.


Yes, I discussed this with my farrier today. For this time, he’s going to wear them for this cycle, but I think for his next cycle we’re going to try something more like what you shared in that link. She said she’s already got a pair pulled for him and put in his box (apparently he has a box, lol).

I’ve worried about these distorting the hoof wall as well. She also mentioned the fact that glue could have gotten in the wrong place and be causing him issues. If it was, it seems to be resolved now. He’s absolutely fine today. Bright-eyed, ears up, moving on (at least at the walk). So hopefully it was just a matter of getting used to them and didn’t take long. I haven’t done anything above the walk with him today though, and will see how he is tomorrow at trot and canter.

Interesting about the lack of impulsion. He’s always (and I mea always I broke him myself) had issues with impulsion and working back to front (much if which was trainer error…my error just as much as anything). The whole idea of putting something on his fronts was to get him more comfy there to see if he’d use his hind end more. I’m hoping that will be the case.

Coffin bone arthritis is something I’ll definitely keep in mind. Regardless of whether these boots/packing he has on now are the answer, there’s a reason he’s been tender-footed for much of his life and is moreso lately, and that needs to be addressed for sure.


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Inquiring minds want to know:
Did AC say anything about the stretches?
Haven’t used one in over 10yrs, but with 2 different ACs I heard things that made sense right away & later.
I’m as skeptical as they come, but through both of these ladies - Lydia Hiby (still active) & Mary Long (no longer in business) - my horses communicated things that helped with the situations I contacted them for.

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"I wouldn’t say everything was fine. It’s a long, long, long story. He started having horrible back issues and spasms with the old farrier that the new farrier says were related to how he was trimmed and the NPA in his hind feet. " —

How was the plantar angle determined, vet x-rays?

I hope so, as you can be fooled just by looking at the hoof what is really going on in there.

Not really. To be honest, I wasn’t very impressed with this AC. I’ve never done it before and went in a skeptic. I’m still a skeptic. I played along and was polite and “receptive.” The AC could tell I was skeptical. When Milton gave his big full body stretch (arched his neck and back waaay up and gave a big groan) she didn’t see him stretch but heard him groan and looked and his head was up (he’d been pretty much asleep before that). She started telling me what to do when “his energy gets up like that and he’s being more up” and how to calm him down. I told her twice that he’d just given a big stretch, he was fine. I don’t think she liked that.

She was full of herself. Most of the day was spent with her telling us how wonderful she is and how we all need to stay in our “heart space.”

She dubbed Milton “stubborn” and “grumpy” right from the start just because he didn’t “tune in” to her like she wanted. Milton looked over at me and rolled his eyes. Hee hee.


I’ll admit that no, there was no x-ray (there will be on the 15th though!). It was my farrier’s opinion that due to the angle of his feet it was very likely. She didn’t really say it was definite, just likely. I tend to agree since a lot of the tension in his lower back, loin, and SI area seemed to go away when those feet started getting trimmed differently.

This is why I’m so excited about the vet visit. I’ve never had anything on this horse checked out. It’s going to be a cool experience.

Too bad.
If you have the time & $60 :open_mouth: (price doubled since I talked to her - but 15min is a long time on a phone call…) I’d say try Lydia Hiby.
Her initial phone consult with me - waaaay back in 1996 - was dead-on.
She’s in CA, I was in IL, consult was by phone.
I had horses boarded then & got out 4-5 days a week.
She asked where horses were, located the suburb on a map & asked me to describe the horses.
When I told her what TB looked like, her first words were:
“He likes the Chestnut mare on his left”
Last time I had been there, that stall was empty.
Next time I was out, a new boarder had moved her chestnut mare into that stall.
Other things she told me, before I even brought up the reason I’d called, rang true also.
Same result when we moved the horses to a very fancy new barn.
I asked her how they liked it.
The response:
“Sometimes dinner is late”
Horses’ priorities differed from mine :roll_eyes:


Sorry to hear. Interesting he is sore after every trim. I’ve never had a horse sore after a trim or shoes. I think if my horse was sore after a trim, I would walk away from that farrier. I don’t care what her “reputation” is, I wouldn’t want her around my horse again.

Normal shoes can help you decide what’s going on. I’ve never understood keeping a horse barefoot when they encounter footing they are sensitive to. Its our responsibility to shoe them to be comfortable on the difficult terraine we ask of them, not their responsibility to “get used to it”.
Hopefully all will work out well!


Hmm. I actually secretly pride myself on being my own AC at least with the horses that I have access to :slight_smile:



If I said he’s been sore after every trim, I didn’t mean to. He was sore after the first time she trimmed him, and maybe twice since then including this deal with the glue-ons yesterday. She’s been doing him for over a year. So, definitely not sore for every trim. He was considerably sore the last time she trimmed him, which was unusual, and then sore yesterday with these glue-ons. Last time, it took him about two days to get over it, this time it took him less than 24 hours.

He got sore on occasion from his former farrier too. And sore in the middle of a trimming cycle. He’s tender on the fronts. He lived for 10 years at my old place and never went on any footing other than our soft, grassy pastures (where he was turned out and ridden). The footing in the arenas where we board and of course gravel or rocks (which there isn’t much of, thankfully), give him a little bit of an issue. And they don’t always give him an issue, but he’s not as confident going on those surfaces as he is on grass.

Until today! Now that he’s cool with the boots he’s walking over all surfaces just fine.

I’m sorry. I hate when people ask for advice and then get all defensive. But I’m really not worried about the farrier or feet anymore. I never was worried about the farrier. As I said, she was willing to give up her plans for her day off to come out immediately and pull the boots and try something else to make him comfortable. She’s a gem. And the horse who used to have a back in spasms and couldn’t even track up at the walk is now relaxed in his back and over-tracking on occasion at the walk. I do credit my farrier with at least some of that. I also credit her with the fact that he no longer had massive cracks and hunks out of his feet by the time she comes out to do his next trim the way it was with my other farrier (who’s explanation was…“that’s just his feet”).

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I’ve had a couple experiences that I think qualify me too.
The one that stands out is last place I boarded.
Owner was a know-it-all asshat.
Told me I’d never survive having my 2 at home.
That was 17yrs ago :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Asshat called me one day to inform me my TB was “acting neurological, off behind”
Thinking EPM, I called my vet, drove the 1h to the barn & spent the time waiting for vet in horse’s stall.
Where he kept lowering his nose to his RF, then looking at me.
Vet got there & “neurologic” turned out to be an abcess RF.

FWIW, I have think all caring horseowners have the ability to know when something is NQR, even w/o gross signs of illness or injury.

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Absolutely. One of the things that bothered me today was that both my horse and his stablemate, who was also involved in the clinic, had their feet done yesterday. Milton’s stablemate is a 23yo OTTB who has just awful feet. Like…awful. Another farrier had been doing him, and his owner just switched him to the same farrier I use (pretty much everyone uses her now). This was the second time she’d done him. He was fine on grass, but in the arena where we were doing the clinic, the footing is a little more of a packed sand and…I don’t know…whatever they use for footing besides sand? Limestone? I truly don’t know. The arena is well-maintained and was in good shape, but it still gives tender-footed horses a little bit of a pause when walking on it, especially a thin-soled OTTB who is freshly trimmed.

All this to say, the AC didn’t seem to pick up on the horse’s soreness at all and kept insisting that he respond more sharply to her “energy” and walk more forward, etc. It was obvious the horse was struggling. She just kept saying, “We’re not asking him to do that much.”

Standing on that arena footing was asking him to do too much IMO. He hurt.

I asked her if some of the “block” she felt in my horse could be pain related. She waved it away and said the same thing, “we’re not asking him to do that much.”

Horses can be in pain standing still. It seems like an Animal Communicator could pick up on that.

She had her agenda and was sticking to it. Anyone who tried to inform her of their horse’s situation and why it may be struggling was basically told to stop trying to control everything and listen to the AC.

Yeah. I’m sure my face gave me away a few times. She actually confronted me on a few occasions and kept saying “You have issues with power and control.”

In other words…“You’re not buying into my BS and I need you to stop that right now.” LOL.