Title (Diagnosis): 8.4.4. Acute laminits

          1 . Author of texts and photographs and contractor: Hana Hofmannová, CE-F

              Place of work: Třeština, Háj, Mohelnice


          2. Literary review: Horseshoeing, 42.6. Laminitis

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

         3. Patient data No. 8.4.4.

             Breed: Czech Warmblood

             Gender: Gelding

             Age: 20 years

             Color: Bay

             Work use: Until 2018 sport, performance ST **, now "horse pension"

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  • Problems complained of by the owner: Lameness

  • Duration of the problem: 3 weeks

  • Stabling: Box, grass paddock

  • Feed : Hay, normal dose of cereals

  • Bedding : Straw

  • The surface on which the horse most often moves: sand riding arena, grass paddock

  • Frequency of hoof treatment : 7-8 weeks

  • Shoeing type: Horse was barefoot when taken into care

  • Lameness, possible diagnosis: Lameness caused by laminitis of the front hooves

4. Anamnesis

5.1. Characteristics of changes:

The horse showed increasing lameness, especially on the hard, uneven surface, which was first attributed to the sensitivity of the barefoot hooves when moving on the frozen surface. After 3 weeks, laminitis was diagnosed on the basis of an X-ray examination.





















5.2. Conformation:

Horizontal plane:

  • outward rotation of both limbs, more pronounced on the right forelimb

  • very pronounced inward rotation of the digit at the right limb and only slight at the left

Sagittal plane:

  • stance slightly camped under

  • steeper pastern and whole limb

Frontal plane:

  • on both limbs off set carpus

  • on the right foreleg a fetlock valgus.


5.3. Hoof shape and pathological changes:

  • on the right limb, due to the more pronounced inward rotation of the digit than the outward rotation of the limb, the hoof has internally diagonal shape.

  • on the left forelimb, the outward rotation of the limb is almost balanced by the inward rotation of the digit, so that the hoof is only slightly internally diagonal.

K 03 LH.jpg
K 04 PH.jpg

Fig. No. 1 and 2: From left: X-rays of the left and right fron hoof confirmed the rotation of the coffin bones

5.4 .: Evaluation of previous shoeing:

  • too long dorsal (anterior) wall of the hooves requires shortening, as well as the heels

  • on both forelegs it is necessary to reduce the outer sides, because the outer side of the hoof is significantly overloaded on impact


5.6 .: Examination results:

X-ray examination (see Fig. No. 1 and 2) confirmed the rotations of both coffin bones and acute laminitis

5. Case description

6.1. Chosen trim:

  • align the solear surface of the hoof parallel to the lower surface of the coffin bone

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

K 02.jpg
K 05.jpg

Fig. No. 3 .: Left front hoof, seen from the side, after trim of the solear surface

Fig. No. 4 .: Right front hoof, seen from the side, after trim of the hoof wall

K 06.jpg

Fig. No. 5 .: View of the solear surface of the front hoof after trim

6.2. Horseshoe preparation:

Equillibrium libero horseshoes with a spider plate ("mercedes" bar) were chosen for shoeing this horse, complemented by a Luwex premium hard hoof packing material.

K 07.jpg
K 08.jpg

Fig. No. 6 and 7 .: View of fitted and modified horseshoes

6.3. Shoeing:

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

  • due to the effort for maximum protection of the horn under the tip of the coffin bone, a slight rocker was made for better breakover.

  • the purpose of shoeing was to achieve the best balance and improve the impact

K 10.jpg
K 11.jpg

Fig. 8. and 9.: From left: Left and right forelimb after shoeing when viewed from the side

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K 13.jpg

Fig. 10. and 11.:

From left: Left and right front limb after shoeing from below

K 09 a.jpg
K 14.jpg

Fig. 12. and 13.:

From left: Front and back view of the shod front limbs

6.4. Veterinary measures

  • limiting the horse's movement to a minimum

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

  • change of bedding - high bedding from shawings

6.5. Principles of further care

  • shoeing every 5-6 weeks

  • when trimming, keep the solear surface parallel to the lower 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

7.1. Effect of the first selected hoof treatment and shoeing:

  • almost immediately after shoeing, the horse stopped limping.

  • by moving the horseshoe backwards, the anteroposterior balance of the hoof was positively affected so as to improve the breakover of the hoof and to minimize the pull of the deep digital flexor tendon on the coffin bone

  • The support of the Luwex Premium hoof packing at the spider plate ("Mercedes" ), which shifted the load of the foot to the palmar part, and the fact that the area under the tip of the coffin bone was protected, probably contributed to the improvement of the horse's comfort.


7.2. Result of the care:

The horse is not lame. He moves in a small paddock attached to the box. The bedding is hoof shawings in a layer of 25-30 cm.

7. Development of changes:
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 damage.


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).