From Endurance to Dressage
Unfortunately, Speedy came up very foot sore again last weekend. I could tell immediately that it was the same thing we've dealt with over the past fifteen months. I won't say that I am not terribly disappointed, but boohooing over it doesn't fix anything. So rather than get too upset, I put in a call to my farrier and let my vet know. And then I just waited.
My farrier was able to come out yesterday and take a look. He noticed a few things which have given us a plan of action. I love a plan of action, so I immediately felt better.
Here is what he saw ...
Both of Speedy's front feet have bruises on both the inside and outside along the hoof wall. My farrier thinks these bruises are the result of Speedy's hind feet coming up and whacking the inside and outside of his hoof.
Seven weeks ago, he was also forging pretty heavily which we know contributed to the foot soreness as well. With the corrective shoeing that my vet's farrier did, combined with Paul's work, the forging has been taken care of, but something is still causing Speedy to be sore. This may be it.
After discussing it pretty throughly with my new farrier, we suspect that Speedy has been hitting the sides of his foot because of the work we have been doing over the past year, especially the work we've done in the last few months. I have been asking Speedy for more collected work which includes stepping deeper and deeper with his inside hind. It's the insides of both front feet that are the most bruised!
We may be simply grasping at straws, but it does make a lot of sense. His stride is quite long in the back, so by sending that inside hind leg deeper underneath him, he very well could be thwacking the insides of those front feet.
So here's our plan. We've pulled his front shoes so that he can level himself off the way he wants to in the front. This will show us how he wants to wear his feet. We're going on vacation in three weeks and won't be back until mid June. When we get back, we're going to re-shoe the fronts but leave him barefoot in the back.
Paul, my farrier, thinks that he might not bruise himself so badly if he doesn't have a steel shoe whacking the walls of his hoof. I am also going back to full time bell boots to help protect the hoof when he does strike it.
Again, this is a just a theory, but at least it's something that we can test. We've also done x-rays, nerve blocks, corrective shoeing, and several lameness evaluations. There isn't anything structurally wrong with Speedy, so this seems like a good next step.
As ever, onward and forward ...
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: