When rescued Sable a few months ago, she was physically in very poor shape. Her coat was matted and fine, and she had urine scalding across her belly from lying in manure. She had been on some medication to treat her Cushings, but the dosage was incorrect so it wasn’t helping much.
Her feet were also a mess- she had foundered in the past, and her soles had dropped from standing in the soft manure for months. Her hoof walls had cracked and started to separate from her hoof. We were not sure if her feet were so bad that it threatened her life, but we immediately put her on pain medication and ordered a blood test so we could better treat her Cushings symptoms.
We put Sable in boots so her feet would not be as uncomfortable, and gave her food rich in nutrients and biotin to help her hoof start to regrow.
When the farrier came out this week, we were hopeful that he would be able to put shoes on her. While most of the horses at the rescue are barefoot, there are times when boots are not sufficient and horses need corrective shoeing in order to be comfortable. Sable is one of those horses.
We were not able to put shoes on her when we first picked her up because her soles had dropped so far and the hoof wall was so brittle, that the shoes would have torn what little was left of her hoof wall, and with her hoof exposed, may have ended up creating a situation that would have been life-threatening. So, we just kept her in boots as much as possible, and waited for the hoof wall to grow stronger and grow longer.
Thankfully, all of our efforts were fruitful, and while it’s not attractive, Sable now has a new pair of shoes that are staying put on her feet! She is quite visibly more comfortable and relaxed with the shoes, and she now has some relief from the pain of standing on the soles of her feet.
We are going to keep her on her supplements so she can continue to grow more hoof wall. It will probably be around three more shoeings before her feet finally look normal, but at least she is finally on the right track!
We will continue to update you on Sable’s progress. It is very possible that she will be able to be ridden, but she will most likely require pain medication for the rest of her life, and due to her Cushing’s she will need to remain on the medication Prescend.
We don’t anticipate anyone willingly taking on that cost, so we are anticipating that Sable will probably stay at Hanaeleh for the rest of her life. Thankfully, however, her life now looks much better than it was a few months ago!