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Bar Shoes and Their Uses

Straight Bar shoes are commonly used on horses that have Quarter Cracks, Corns and White Line Trauma. The shoe is designed to hold the hoof together so that heeling can progress more quickly. Once the soreness goes out of the hoof the horse can then generally be kept in work.

Egg Bar shoes are used for horses that have low /collapsed heels, broken Pastern hoof axes that can cause under run heels and on horses that have large round feet. These shoes are designed to give the horse lateral support enabling them to unload excessive forces in the heel area.

Three Quarter Bar shoes are used on horses that have a corn on the inside or outside heel. This shoe has no pressure over the corn area.

Graduated Shoes are thicker at the heels and thinner at the toe. These shoes help the horse with a broken hoof pastern angle. A horse will generally need only a couple of shoeing’s in this type of shoe as it encourages the heels to grow down.

Heart Bar shoes are used for a horse that has Laminitis. These shoes are designed to apply pressure to the frog which in turn applies pressure to the Pedal Bone which will then push the Pedal Bone back up into position. I must add that this procedure needs to be done in consultation with your Veterinarian, as there is a danger that if the Heart Bar is too long and there is excessive pressure applied to the point of the Pedal Bone you may break the end of the Pedal Bone off. X-rays are a necessity in Laminitis cases.

There are now several new designs of horseshoes that are aimed at overcoming unsoundness in the lower limbs:

  • 1. World Racing Plate – is designed for a four point landing of the hoof, and has a square toe with a steep break over.
  • 2. Natural Balance Shoe – is a wide webbed shoe with a rolled toe and is designed to fit behind the toe of the hoof.

These shoes have one thing in common and that is that they both allow the hoof to break over more easily.

Article courtesy of O’Dwyers Horseshoe