Kiwi thoroughbred Shaun begins his barefoot journey

Terrie Yordy works on Shaun's nearside hind hoof.
Terrie Yordy works on Shaun's nearside hind hoof.

Kiwi thoroughbred Shaun is now minus his shoes and footloose at his home in Kansas.

The North Canterbury-born racehorse, rescued from kill pens in Washington State thanks to the generosity of Horsetalk readers, is now living at the home of Deb Johnson.

Johnson has been working on restoring Shaun to full health, and his feet have been among the challenges.

His feet were in poor condition when she took him in last year. He was tenderfooted and the walls were brittle and thin.

She has implemented a raft of measures, including special shoeing and supplements, to restore them.

“I had an appointment with Terrie Yordy on Wednesday to trim Shaun and evaluate how best to proceed with his barefoot journey,” Johnson explains.

“I had originally planned on a rubber shoe, casting and letting those nail holes grow out.

“When I got home from a clinic on Sunday evening, both his front shoes were sideways, he was limping on both fronts, and his feet were getting torn apart.”

Eclipse and Bit were heading for the back of the property with Shaun when she caught him, threw on a halter and lead, and started heading down to the smaller, contained pasture.

“He was not happy to be leaving his mares. He called and called, danced, and finally they came running to join us going through the gates.”

Shaun checks out the hoof jack. It makes a nice head scratcher!
Shaun checks out the hoof jack. It makes a nice head scratcher!

Once contained, she ran for her nippers and set about getting the shoes off.

“Shaunie is pretty good for the farrier, but can be challenging. We are working on it.

“This time, he stood like a statue, and allowed me to pull my first shoe. I nipped the toe of his hoof before it could break off on its own, and then did his other foot. He was off on his front right, probably because of the shoes being bent, so I ran  down and grabbed my hoof boots, praying they would fit.

“Both Eclipse’s boots fit, amazing because she wears a 1.5 on one foot and a 2.0 on the other.

“I threw some gold bond foot powder in to keep his feet dry and my farrier came out the next morning to trim him and do damage control.

“I switched to Terrie to trim feet because she specializes in barefoot trims, and is very, very good at developing a balanced, bare foot.

“Terrie trimmed him up, more rasp than trim, and said he looked good.

“She said my pasture was the perfect place for him to transition, and told me to see how he does. I can use the boots if he gets ouchy, but so far so good!”

Johnson said the Formula 4 Feet hoof supplement that Shaun has been taking has built a solid and good sized hoof wall, and his frog and sole seem to be nice and thick.

» More on Shaun – aka Cusack


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One thought on “Kiwi thoroughbred Shaun begins his barefoot journey

  • April 9, 2013 at 8:42 am

    Thoroughbred feet can be as good as in any other breed, given the right care !


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