Therapeutic (Corrective) Shoeing

z bar horseshoe

Above is a Z-Bar or Corn-Relief horseshoe – used to treat a corn.

“Therapeutic, or pathological, work pertains to treatment of lameness, genetic or congenital defects. This type of work is usually both mentally and physically challenging for all involved.

My feeling about this type of work is that it is a team effort. The team consists of veterinarian, farrier, alternative treatment practitioner (chiropractor, acupuncturist, etc.), and most importantly, the owner.

Long-term treatment can be stressful and labor intensive, however the end result of this hard work is a healthy and happy horse.”

– Mike Poe, CJF

Laminitis is an inflammation of the connection between the hoof and the coffin bone. With enough irritation this connection can fail and other factors can cause the coffin bone to rotate downward.

This rotation is commonly referred to as FOUNDER. It is extremely painful, but with early intervention and appropriate treatment, this condition can be controlled and the effects minimized. Laminitis is treated by trimming the hoof to realign the bony column and applying frog support to stabilize the third phalanx (coffin bone).

Navicular Syndrome/Disease is a catch-all term given to several disorders of the region of the navicular bone. The treatment for all of these disorders is similar.

pour-in-padThey are commonly caused by conformation and/or use.

While this can be treated, it is a progressive disease which can only be slowed, not stopped. Navicular is treated by trimming the coffin joint to a slightly sub-luxated (broken back) angle and a bar shoe and/or cushioned sole support is applied.


(These are the two most common and confusing lameness problems in horses.)