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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 12:15 AM Thread Starter
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Old Mac Boots for horses....

Have any of the horse people here used them for founder?

My 29 year old TWH foundered on hay 3 weeks ago. I was having great luck with foamboard and duct tape to support his soles, until we started having 2 inchs of snow every night that melts during the day....that is until today when we must have gotten 2" of rain....now I have a yucky muddy corral and can't keep them on him. I even put down 6 rubber stall mats around the feeder trying to keep his feet dryer...but tape won't hold up with the wet.

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This is my "baby" when he was 26...Waylon...


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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 12:23 AM
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 12:31 AM
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I used them on a mare that foundered. They worked well for hoof protection but the cause of the founder was not controllable and became chronic. We ended up euthanizing the mare after several bad episodes. Have his thyroid checked and see if he needs supplementation, that was part of my mare's problem. Thyroid meds bought her 2 additional years before it got completely out of control.

Wishing you the best of luck with your beautiful boy.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 09:28 AM
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I've used them as well for horses recovering from an abscess. If the horse is out 24/7 they might rub the heel, but I've found all easy boot type things do if on all the time.

I tend to use the Old Mac 1/2 the time and put the horse up somewhere dry with his foot lightly bandaged the other half. Make sure you measure correctly for the length and width of the Old Mac. You might have to pad in some areas. My one horse with more oblong feet needed a certain size and then I had to cut up a big sponge and stuff it in the back at the bulb of her heels. My horses keep the Old Mac on, since they have that strap you put on as well as the velcro sides of the boots that adhere really well.

Good luck with your horse. Hope to hear he's recovering.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 10:36 AM
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So sorry to hear about your old friend. Due to age, I would presume your vet is looking at metabolic. I do not have any experience with the boots as we got lucky with one of our old mares and were able to turn things around before enough rotation took place to warrant protection or boots.

I went through metabolic with one of my older Arab mares (28 at the time) and we were able to manage it for about 2 years until everything started going south with her, both age related and disease complications. We were able to x-ray and trim (vet talked to farrier) then manage it with diet, anti-inflammatory and pergolide. This mare was also born with excellent feet, which undoubtedly helped her too. Have you started him on pergolide yet? In addition, anti-inflammatory-banamine, bute or equinox to both control the pain and further damage from inflammation. If you are dosing a lot of banamine or bute --talk to your vet about ulcer guard during that period and make sure he has something to nibble on 24/7.

Here is a website with some pretty good info and there is a yahoo group that I have heard has great info as well. I never joined the Yahoo group as I am lucky to have a great vet and his protocol worked well on our mare.
Equine Cushing's and Insulin Resistance Information

Diet is vital as is making sure they never have an empty stomach. Most of the major feed companies make a low starch feed, especially for IR/Cushing’s horses. The small hole (slow feeder) hay nets work great for insuring they always have something to nibble on. Our mare always had E Washington orchard grass hay in front of her and I never soaked it. I did have to rotate around a bit on the low starch feeds, as she wasn’t impressed with the one from LMF. Soaked and drained beet pulp also worked well for her. I would talk to your vet about the hay, testing and if it should be soaked.

I will keep your old boy in my prayers and thoughts. Best of luck.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 11:48 AM
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Yes, I've used them before and really like them. My Fox Trotter has horrible feet (probably due to years of starvation and abuse before I rescued him) and I've used them before for an abscess and also when he had a horrible case of white line.

Olivia and Gunner

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 12:18 PM
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I've got a few weeks worth of pergolide if anyone wants to pay shipping for it.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 08:57 PM Thread Starter
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Oh gawd...thank you guys SO MUCH for all the information!! There's so much conflicting information on the internet...feed light, feed 24/7....use sand, put them on firm ground...etc etc...I decided to stick with what my Vet says, because I was getting so confused. The Vet will be here tomorrow again, to check on his progress...compared to a week ago when she was here, he's WAY better. Tender without the foamboard shoes, but I just keep making them and putting them on everyday (hopefully the weather will dry up a bit so they'll stay on for more than a day). But it's this oddball Montana weather that has me looking at the boots . It's supposed to be cold and snowy this time of year.

So when the Vet is here tomorrow, I'm going to bring up the metabolic faction of all this...he shouldn't have foundered on grass hay...there is no mold, no hot spots...so age, and what age brings with it is very possibly the culprit. He doesn't show any signs of Cushings, but the thyroid thing is something I'm going to bring up. He too has fantastic feet...and the xrays showed very little rotation. I had him on Bute at first...but his pain was so great, I couldn't even walk him around, so we tried the Banamine, and that did wonders in 3 days. I have Bute paste now, but since he really is willing to walk out...is engaging in all the activity in our yard, I haven't used it....do you think I should anyway?

I was wondering, too....he had colic surgery 15 years ago....I wondered if maybe something was changing in his gut that could cause him to founder...considering his age and the trauma that surgery might have done??

My problem is severe ignorance (I hate to admit it, after having horses for well over 50 years), but I've never had a horse founder...the only thing I was capable of doing, was recognizing it. I just want him to be comfortable...to be able to be out with his brother....he's not going on any hard rides or anything....a life of semi-retirement (I still ride him in our pastures and other fields close to home)....I keep him barefoot, so no pavement or anything.

He likes the LMF ...if there is something he won't eat, it's got to be really awful. I did buy some Remission to mix in his feed, and that must be one of those "awful" things . I was thinking too, that I should have bought the "complete mix" instead of the Low non-structural carbohydrate formula Stage I...I really want him to have all that he "needs" at this time....Should I go back and get a couple sacks of the LMF complete feed?

About the boots...THANK YOU ellenm for the idea of using a sponge to pad them. I was wondering what to use in case they fit great in length, but slightly too wide....

This horse was my "dream horse"...when I was a kid I mucked stalls at a Walking Horse stable, and all I wanted for years and years was a black TWH. When I got Waylon, it was a dream come true. He actually came from the same stock in the stable I worked for. He has a pedigree to die for (in a four generation pedigree, there are 12 World Grand Champs)...he's smart, kind, responsive....he's just a wonderful guy...He showed me a great time for over 25 years, and we're not going to let founder beat us.

You guys are the BEST!! This whole site is GREAT! I have learned more here in the last year and a half about so many things...there is so much knowledge here on so many things. Thank you, thank you!

p

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Last edited by phrannie; 02-23-2012 at 09:08 PM.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-24-2012, 01:02 AM
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-24-2012, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phrannie View Post
Oh gawd...thank you guys SO MUCH for all the information!! There's so much conflicting information on the internet...feed light, feed 24/7....use sand, put them on firm ground...etc etc...I decided to stick with what my Vet says, because I was getting so confused. The Vet will be here tomorrow again, to check on his progress...compared to a week ago when she was here, he's WAY better. Tender without the foamboard shoes, but I just keep making them and putting them on everyday (hopefully the weather will dry up a bit so they'll stay on for more than a day). But it's this oddball Montana weather that has me looking at the boots . It's supposed to be cold and snowy this time of year.

So when the Vet is here tomorrow, I'm going to bring up the metabolic faction of all this...he shouldn't have foundered on grass hay...there is no mold, no hot spots...so age, and what age brings with it is very possibly the culprit. He doesn't show any signs of Cushings, but the thyroid thing is something I'm going to bring up. He too has fantastic feet...and the xrays showed very little rotation. I had him on Bute at first...but his pain was so great, I couldn't even walk him around, so we tried the Banamine, and that did wonders in 3 days. I have Bute paste now, but since he really is willing to walk out...is engaging in all the activity in our yard, I haven't used it....do you think I should anyway?

I was wondering, too....he had colic surgery 15 years ago....I wondered if maybe something was changing in his gut that could cause him to founder...considering his age and the trauma that surgery might have done??

My problem is severe ignorance (I hate to admit it, after having horses for well over 50 years), but I've never had a horse founder...the only thing I was capable of doing, was recognizing it. I just want him to be comfortable...to be able to be out with his brother....he's not going on any hard rides or anything....a life of semi-retirement (I still ride him in our pastures and other fields close to home)....I keep him barefoot, so no pavement or anything.

He likes the LMF ...if there is something he won't eat, it's got to be really awful. I did buy some Remission to mix in his feed, and that must be one of those "awful" things . I was thinking too, that I should have bought the "complete mix" instead of the Low non-structural carbohydrate formula Stage I...I really want him to have all that he "needs" at this time....Should I go back and get a couple sacks of the LMF complete feed?

About the boots...THANK YOU ellenm for the idea of using a sponge to pad them. I was wondering what to use in case they fit great in length, but slightly too wide....

This horse was my "dream horse"...when I was a kid I mucked stalls at a Walking Horse stable, and all I wanted for years and years was a black TWH. When I got Waylon, it was a dream come true. He actually came from the same stock in the stable I worked for. He has a pedigree to die for (in a four generation pedigree, there are 12 World Grand Champs)...he's smart, kind, responsive....he's just a wonderful guy...He showed me a great time for over 25 years, and we're not going to let founder beat us.

You guys are the BEST!! This whole site is GREAT! I have learned more here in the last year and a half about so many things...there is so much knowledge here on so many things. Thank you, thank you!

p
I cannot really give you guidance on the bute. We had our mare on fairly high dosage of Banamine then Bute for a few weeks. In addition, we did use light doses of ulcer guard as a preventative measure. You do not need to use the full dosage of the ulcer guard to get some good prevention. Probably worth the extra costs in my opinion. Alfalfa is a good buffer for most horses on bute but stay away from it with IR/Cushings horses.

I was in the same boat, as had not had a founder here in 50 years since the old Shetland pony when I was a kid.

The one thing about my mare was she was always a super easy keeper. The only mare I ever had that we actually had to limit the grass in the spring and could gain weight on a show circuit in the heat of summer. We took her to a major show once when she had a four month old foal on her and she went champion mare, and was in great weight! I did not breed this mare so cannot say for sure if there were any similar problems with her dam or grand dam as older mares. None of our horses from our original foundation mare or the Kale bred horses have had the problem and some went to way over 30. The only symptoms she presented prior was being a little too heavy and a little cresty in the neck as an older mare. Her coat was always excellent. We have a 31 year old who was born here and has never had a gram of bute in her life, I do have to put some groceries in this mare and always have, but she looks great for her age. With that, my opinion on super easy keepers has changed. I had another Kale bred mare here who went to 30 without any problems and she did have colic surgery in her teens so don't think that would be a reason.

There are several companies now making the low starch feed. If you get into a problem with him not eating the stuff, take a look at the Triple Crown Sr to mix in with the low starch feeds. Not a bad feed for even Cushings/IR horses and they love it. Stay away from most sr feed with any molassis. And the slow feeder (very small holes) hay nets are a lifesaver. I use them for everybody now as they can have hay in front of them 24/7.

Then you probably will be needing a dry lot and grazing muzzle for limited time out in the pasture. On the grazing muzzles make sure and order some real sheepskin halter padding or he will get some rub marks when it warms up.

Another thing to keep in mind the sugar levels in grass decrease at night so when turning out for very limited turnout with a grazing muzzle always do it in the early morning. Never in the late afternoon or early evening as the plants have had all day to manufacture sugar.


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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-24-2012, 02:06 PM
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Here is the small hole hay bag I use. After going through a couple of those spendy "nibble net" things that did not hold up for long, we went to these and another by Tuffy? that I cannot find a link for. The tuffy brand nets were under $10 and I actually like those the best. I immediately cut the string that is used to hang it from, and ran a decent sized carabiner or snap through the top and hang the net with the carabiner. It’s best to get at least a couple for each horse as they do take time to fill, not something you want to be doing late at night when somebody is low on hay. I use a dedicated muck bucket to fill them in.

I have a five year old mare who is is a glutton when it comes to eating fast and when stuffed full, it will last her about 12 hours and she only gets a RB and beet pulp for concentrated feed. On my 31 year old mare who still eats hay along with her Sr feed and beet pulp, stuffed full it will last about 24 hours.

What I found is when you first start using the slow feeding concept they still eat fairly fast but soon slow down. Took my horses about 10 days to adjust fully and not just want to eat it up as normal.

The other neat thing about these nets, is unless there is foal involved, you can hang them low-thus letting the horse eat in a more natural position, that is providing you cut off the tie strings and replace with a snap. As the holes are too small for any full sized horse to get a hoof caught up in. Also there is far less wasted hay with these than any other sort of hay rack or manger that I've ever used.

Dura-Tech® Slow Feed Hay Bag in Hay Bags at Schneider Saddlery

Another point on feeding him his concentrates --try to feed them over 3 or even 4 smaller portion feedings, rather than two larger feedings. From my understanding, the spikes from large amounts are almost as dangerous as the sugars.


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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-25-2012, 06:46 PM
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No personal experience on this. Knock on wood, my 25yo OTTB despite being in heavy work all 25 years of her life is as sound as can be, and never had one issue with anything. (She's a farrier's dream!). But I just wanted to add that your boy is beautiful! Despite being a h/j girl, I do still admire the gaited horses He looks great for 26, and awesome being 29 years old!!

The horse I grew up with was an araapaloosa, and he is still a lesson horse. He has cushings and the same problems your boy is having. They tried everything for his foundering, and the only thing that has worked for him was remaining in the stall 24 hours/day, no free grazing. He is 28yo now and is perfectly content doing so. He gets regular 'walks' during the day, and his owner comes out and rides, and hand walks around outside rain or shine. (although he's only ridden maybe once a week, max). They've done this routine for 3 years now, and he has had 0 problems since. (However I realize many horses would go nuts doing so, but he happens to enjoy it, and enjoy his stall)
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-25-2012, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks again for all the helpful information!

He hasn't need Bute for the last week...he's walking out pretty darn good now even with foamboard taped to his feet...and last night hubby was cleaning his stall, and he actually trotted out to see what the dog was barking at.

I won't know about his thyroid till Monday, since the Vet isn't around on weekends...

Robinb....thank you for the link to the haybags. I was picturing the old kind, with the giant holes...but these are great!!! They would also keep him occupied during this period of time he has to be locked up. He's sucking up the attention, tho....his stall/turnout is 40 steps from my back door, yet I think he's feeling so much better, he's getting bored. Eating is a great pastime, especially if he has to work to get it. I'm glad you mentioned getting two ...I work nights, and the last feeding when I work graveyard is 11:00 pm....and the last on swings is 1:00 am. I don't want to be stuffing bags at night...dark, snowy, COLD night.

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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-26-2012, 12:08 AM
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Had a foundering horse, not sure what your hay is but if you can get low sugar grass hay that would be best, you can also soak it to get more of the sugar out.... The hay bag is a great idea to give him something to do. Eliminate all starches, grains, molasses, and pasture..... If your horse isn't cubby and needs weight he can have fiber or beet pulp if needed, but remember horses are meant to just forage. If you have pasture and you want him to be with his buds, you could get a grazing muzzle. See what the vet says.

I say movement is good, keeps the blood flowing, alas not forced movement. The neighbors horse just foundered and we left him out in his paddock to move and I truly believe it helped rather than hindered.

When you change the pads are his feet warm? You can soak them in cold water, oh the nights soaking my horses feet......
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