Contracted heels can be the end result of many different factors. They are not typical of any particular breed or conformation and may occur anywhere. Sometimes it begins from birth when the foal has very upright pasterns; this condition then allows the heels to grow longer than the toes causing a very upright appearance.
The result then, if it is not corrected, is that the frog loses its pressure contact with the ground, then it also begins to contract or shrink and this causes the hoof capsule to become even narrower across the heel. This whole shrinking process may have only taken a few months to get to what now looks like ‘donkey footed’ in appearance, but will take a lot longer to return to normal, with the aid of careful trimming.
Sometimes as a result of hoof or leg injury, the horse will begin to step short with one leg. This will cause the toe to wear excessively and allows the heel … Continue Reading ››