At various points throughout the year, I see an increase in deep central sulci, poor frog health and thrush.
Poorly frogs are a great concern to me, due to the wide range of issues that can potentially arise from a compromised frog. Beside addressing the cause (e.g. diet, metabolic issues, poor hygiene, biomechanical issues), I often recommend a topical treatment.
The graphic shows how a horse who avoids using a sore frog/back of the foot will fall into patterns that create a vicious circle, from which it is difficult to get out of – e.g. a horse that has sore frogs will avoid landing on them, which in return removes the stimulus it would need to regrow a healthy frog. Also, how contracted heels and a deep central sulcus are the perfect breeding ground for even more deterioration…
Not even mentioning the implication toe first landings can have on shock absorption in the whole leg, use of muscles and tendons, and other biomechanics.
Just think – if your horse responds to the slight touch of a hoof pick, how uncomfortable will it be to walk on these sore frogs with their full weight of hundreds of kilos!
If you have any concerns, please speak to me on my next visit, and we will make sure your horse can stay comfortable.