Well, no one has ever accused me of being opinionated.
That's not true. Really a few hundred people have accused me of that. Haw Haw! It's true.
But here's another opinion of mine that probably won't matter much to anyone else, but it might.
I think we should band together and rise up and demand more informative horse magazines! If they are going to whittle the pages down in horse mags today, the information should be more user-necessary and less user-fluff.
Okay, let me back up a little bit.
I was just over on the Eclectic Horseman site where I ordered a DVD set called
Four Strands of Rawhide with Randy Rieman and Bill Dorrance. Because I want to learn to braid Raitas (or Reatas) just like Bill Dorrance used to. That was the only website where I could find any instructional material with him.
I was so impressed with this site and the topics that I signed up for their magazine. Which is what got me on this topic!
Over the years I've subscribed to many of national horse magazines or nag mags as some refer to them. Equus, Horse & Rider, Horse Illustrated, Dressage Today. I love to keep abreast of everything horse related. (I don't do any dressage riding, yet. But you know, someday maybe. And my dressage horse is a beauty! He just doesn't know he's a dressage horse, yet. But you know, someday maybe.)
My first poll question:
Have you noticed lately that horse magazines have been shrinking?
a. Yes, but at least the prices haven't gone up as they have with everything else.
b. Nope, and don't care about this stupid poll question.
c. Get real! The only thing that hasn't been shrinking is my waist line.
Once you pull-out all the extra subscription cards, what remains isn't much. A front and back cover and 10 pages of ads and 5 pages of articles. Okay that's a tiny bit exaggerated, but it's getting like that.
I think they should combine all those mags, Equus and H&R (which are printed by the same publisher anyway), along with a few others and create one new mag.
Would you subscribe?
So in Equus recently I came across this picture. The article is titled Hoof Supplements on page 27 of edition number 387.
I looked at that photo and was instantly upset. Someone has once again cut into a healthy frog! Dang it!
But this hoof is ready for a shoe. It needs the protection of a shoe now because every bit of protection that it's been busy growing over the past 8 weeks has just been hacked out of it.
One thing about this picture is that you can clearly distinguish the white line ( that yellow line around the outside of the sole) and the waterline just to the outside of the white (yellow) line. Then nail holes and outer (or pigmented) wall. Sometimes the waterline is referred to as the unpigmented wall.
If your horse should start limping right after being shod, usually that's because of what is referred to as a "hot nail." The nail was driven into the sensitive laminae above the white (yellow) line.
What would I have done differently with this foot?
1. I would have left the protective outer layer on the frog so it could function normally. I would not have opened it up to the horse's world of manure, urine, bacteria and most likely thrush which can and will damage that foot to the point where the horse would be mildly to seriously lame without shoes. If this type of damage continues with every shoeing eventually that frog will just give up trying to heal itself. Two more poll questions: Do you see shriveled up, atrophied frogs on your horse? Do you know that frogs aren't really supposed to shed every year? They only go through that cycle when they aren't healthy and they are attempting to self-repair.
2. I would not have attacked the sole and hacked any of it out unless there was a layer of dead, flaky sole that was trying to exfoliate because it was ready. Then I might help it, if that what the hoof seemed to be calling for. I'd leave it alone if it didn't. A hoof on natural maintenance trims usually needs nothing done to the frog, bars and sole.
3. I would NOT put a shoe back on this foot because I wouldn't have damaged to the point that will take weeks to repair itself. I would simply put the natural bevel around the wall and grow out those ugly nail holes and any flare. After the hoofwall was able to repair itself and the holes were gone, I would have a healthy foot the horse could use without shoes. Or if not, I could just pop a pair of Easyboot Gloves on the fronts and off I'd go.
I do all the time, still I hate to see these pictures in magazines. I wish editors would educate themselves in fields that have passed them by.
Two more poll questions:
Why is the white line termed the white line?
a. because calling it "the yellow line" made too much sense.
b. because calling it the distal laminar junction is too hard to remember.
c. because there are no blood vessels in the area of laminae that connects the wall to the sole, so it's white, rather than red as is the sensitive laminae, the area that connects the wall to the coffin bone.
Why is the water line termed the water line?
a. because that where the horse stores water in dry climates.
b. because it sounds almost as ridiculous as calling a yellow line a white line.
c. because that area of unpigmented wall is the most moist part of the wall drawing moisture from other areas of wall and is generally the area of wall that should come into contact with the ground first during a stride.
I have never seen those two questions answered in any nag mag anywhere. Have you?
I like my answers!
Well, I know I'm going to get some flake for both of those "c" answers though. I always seem to illicit at least a couple "you're so dumb" response when I try to sound like I know what I'm talking about. Haw haw!
And what is your response to that Eclectic Horseman poll question?
Thanks for reading!