Innovative new shoes help laminitic horse step out again

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Tanya tries to get Cheeky, 35, moving, but the pain of laminitis makes him reluctant.
Tanya tries to get Cheeky, 35, moving, but the pain of laminitis makes him reluctant.

A new type of horse shoe developed in Britain is credited with saving a horse from the pain and discomfort of laminitis.

The shoe, the GluShu, is glued on rather than nailed. It has a forged aluminium horseshoe inside with a hardened steel bar at the break over.

Cheeky, a 35-year-old pony suffering from laminitis as a result of Cushing’s, could not even walk on grass, his owner said.

The pain of laminitis is often underestimated and it’s essential to make the horse or pony comfortable quickly, while they’re being treated. Being stable bound has been proven to exacerbate laminitis due to weight gain and lack of exercise. Maintaining good circulation and exercise is essential to help horses through laminitis.

Tanya said Cheeky spent most of his day lying down. “Bute wasn’t even helping. He had never worn shoes a day in his life and even if I wanted to try nail on shoes (which I didn’t) his feet were just too sore for nails.”

The Glushu has a forged aluminium horseshoe inside with a hardened steel bar at the break over.
The Glushu has a forged aluminium horseshoe inside with a hardened steel bar at the break over.

Her farrier suggested she try Cheeky with a pair of GluShu shoes. The shoes are placed on the horse’s foot using an acrylic glue that can flex. When warmed to 35°C it will set in up to five minutes and will remain bonded to the Glushu and the hoof for up to 10 weeks.

Its makers say GluShu is completely non-invasive, and perfect for the footsore laminitic horse or pony, providing hoof support, shock absorption and cushion so that a horse can continue to be turned out in comfort during a laminitic episode.

“Before, he was like a cripple staggering on stones. Afterwards he walked off immediately just like pre-laminitis,” Tanya said.

“It’s now week four of the GluShus on his front feet and I’m so glad he has them. He is so much more comfortable, holding his head higher rather than it hanging low in pain and depression.

“Life is good!”

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