Rachel- Feet in the Making

Story submitted by Gentle Spirit Horses

Our farrier posted a quick “first trim vs now” about Rachel’s hooves that made me want to share quickly what we see, and what we do. Sometimes it’s easy to forget where we started and how much of a difference we can make with your support!

Rachel was one of the very first horses that came in to GSH through the ISPMB neglect and seizure case last winter. We had very little hope that she would ever be sound based on what we were told and observed, but were thrilled when her x-rays showed a nearly normal bone structure with a prognosis of a return to full soundness!


Rachel literally ran everywhere she could for the first 3-4 days after her initial trim. She had never been observed to run for at least 2.5 years prior to that, so once she could, she DID. It has been one of the highs of the ISPMB situation, from finding out in x-rays that her bones really aren’t far from normal so that she could be rehabbed to full riding soundness, to seeing the changes and joy in her personality.

We hope you enjoy these “before and during” photos. The left hand photos are from late February when she was gentled enough for her x-rays and trim, and when we still assumed she would never be sound. The right hand photos are from October’s trim. That’s six months rehab – an aggressive first trim based on x-rays and 3 follow up trims since, along with good nutrition, turnout and movement. The last picture gives you a glimpse of the inner heel that still needs to spread some from the contraction. This winter, Rachel has been allowed to heal and run. She is a wonderful “mom” horse to all the younger horses in our rescue herd and with the go ahead given from the farrier, she will be starting her training under saddle this upcoming Spring! (Assuming the ice and snow finally leave South Dakota).


Rachel is currently looking for her permanent home.

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