I am sure I have mentioned before that Eli has a jacked up hind end. He has wonky conformation, and I have discussed it with both the vet and the farrier (repeatedly). While there is no real fix for unconventional conformation, there are things that can mitigate it — correct shoeing, therapeutic maintenance, protective boots, not looking for too long at his hind end …
See how his left toe is pointing right, but the front of his left hock is pointing left? It’s even wonkier on the right, although not possible to really see in this image. And if you watch him walk straight at you, you can see how his whole right hind rotates as he pushes off the ground. His left leg is bow-legged, and his right leg stands a bit too close to his left. Pretty creepy, honestly.
I think at least partially as a result of this build, Eli can have trouble with interference behind. But of course he goes in turnout without boots. He clips himself quite a bit — he’s got two nicks, both with some swelling, on his hind pasterns. I was even concerned a fetlock boot had caused one, but once I put the boots back on I could see that the nick was lower than the boot. (And the boot didn’t slip during our ride last night.) When I took the boots off, Eli shifted his weight. He literally dragged the inside of his right hoof up against the inside of his left pastern — gee, I guess catching the trailer of his shoe could have caused that nick, huh?
I am a sucker, and I am paranoid. The Veredus sheepskin-lined pastern boots are ordered, shipped, and on the way to Eli. He’s still not going to wear boots in turnout, but he’ll be wearing these new pastern boots under saddle. Although I am sure he will find new ways to nick himself. Then I will have to find new ways to prevent it. So it goes with horses.
Let’s end this post on a higher note: early birthday present to myself! Mango Bay Design makes me feel so much better about everything. If you’ve been under a rock and not yet tried her belts or tees, you are really missing out.
One last birthday-related thing — if we are friends on facebook, please find my birthday campaign for the World Wildlife Fund and consider making a donation. OR friend me on facebook to find it! ANY amount is much appreciated! And thank you to any readers who have already donated. Polar bears, whooping cranes, Irrawaddy dolphins, and snow leopards thank you, too.