Title (Diagnosis): 8.4.5.  Laminitic hoof with coffin bone rotation


         1. Author of texts and photographs: Václav Kubeček, CE-F

            Place of work: Osnice


          2. Literary review: Horseshoeing, 42.6. Laminitis

            ISBN: 978-80-7490-052-5, Tisk Pálka 2015


         3. Patient data No. 8.4.5.

             Breed: Shagya arab

             Sex: Mare

             Age: 14 years

             Color: White

             Work use: Recreational riding

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  • Problems complained of by the owner: The mare shows signs of acute laminitis, cannot put weight on the limb and is unable to walk

  • Duration of the problem: 6 months

  • Stables: Box, grass paddock

  • Feed : Hay

  • Bedding : Straw

  • The surface on which the horse moves most often:  grassy paddock

  • Frequency of hoof treatment : 6 weeks

  • Shoeing type: Equilibrium two-clip horseshoe with bar and Luwex M9 packing material

  • Lameness, possible diagnosis: Severe lameness caused by laminitis of the front hooves, difficulty even when standing

4. Anamnesis

5.1. Characteristics of changes and posture of limbs:

The laminitic episode was probably caused by an excessive intake of young grass. The mare shows great difficulty even when standing, the front limbs were in a classic position, stretched out in front of her and the back tucked under the stern. A large hematoma caused by the pressure of the tip of the coffin bone was diagnosed in the sole of the left forelimb.


5.2. Hoof shape and pathological changes:

  • X-ray examination confirmed the rotation of the coffin bones


Fig. No. 1. - 2 .: From the left; X-ray image of the left and right front limb. X-ray examination confirmed rotation of both coffin bones and acute laminitis.

5.3 .: Evaluation of the trim and previous shoeing:


Fig. No. 3. - 6 .: View of inappropriately shod front limbs from the front, left front limb from below and both limbs from the side

5. Case description

6.1. Chosen hoof trim:

  • shorten the heels

  • align the dorsal hoof wall parallel to the dorsal surface of the coffin bone


Fig. No. 7 .: Left front limb viewed from below before trim. A hematoma caused by the pressure of the coffin bone is visible on the sole in front of the tip of the frog.

Fig. No. 8. - 9 .: From the left - Bottom view of the front limbs after trim


Fig. No. 10 .: Front view of the front limbs. Left front limb after trim.

Fig. No. 11 .: Side view of the front limbs after trim.


Fig. No. 12. - 13 .: From the left - Front view of the right and left front limb after trim.

6.2 .: Shoe preparation:

Equilibrium two-clip horseshoes with spider plate ("mercedes" bar) were chosen and fitted for shoeing the affected limbs.


Fig. No. 14. - 16.: From left - View of the fitted two-clip horseshoe Equilibrium with spider plate ("Mercedes" bar).

6.3. Horseshoes:

  • lowering of the heels, significant trim of the dorsal (anterior) hoof wall,

  • due to the effort for maximum protection of the horn under the tip of the coffin bone, a sledge bend was performed for better tilting.

  • a Luwex M9 cushion was used to support the foot

22 PP.jpg

Fig. No. 17. - 19-: View of the front limbs after the 1st shoeing from the front and from the side.


Fig. No. 20.-22 .: View of the front limbs after the 2nd shoeing from the front and from the side.  

6.4. Veterinary measures

  • limiting the horse's movement to a minimum

  • dietary measures - reducing the feed ration to a minimum, without grain feeds

  • change of bedding - high bedding from sawdust

6.5. Principles of further care

  • shoeing interval no longer than 5-6 weeks

  • when trimming, keep the sole surface parallel to the solear surface of the coffin bone

  • keep the dorsal part of the hoof wall parallel to the dorsal surface of the coffin bone.

6. Chosen measures
7. Development of changes:

7.2. Result of the care:


Fig. No. 23.-24 .: Fig .: No. 23-24: Control X-rays after about a year of care show a significant improvement in the position of the coffin bone.

8. Take home message

Laminitis is one of the most serious diseases in horses. Treatment is very difficult because it depends on many circumstances, such as the care and environment in which the horse is kept, the individual's state of health and, in particular, the degree of disability.


There are a number of reasons that trigger the laminitic process, and perhaps the greatest treachery of this disease is that no clinical signs are visible at the beginning of the disease. The prognosis for recovery is very uncertain. It depends on the degree of damage to the individual structures of the affected limb.


As for movement during treatment, it can be said that the rule applies: the less the horse moves, the better. It is good to provide the conditions so that he can lie down often and comfortably and thus relieve the affected limb(s).