Karen Read is a long-time Neigh Savers volunteer. She is chronicling Rose’s journey with EponaShoe as well as two other horses we feel would benefit from this program. EponaShoe has generously donated their services to us and we are most appreciative for the friendship and generosity they have extended us.
Life was good, really good, for Rose until she developed a deep, bleeding hoof crack. Heavy rains and wet footing created the perfect storm for Rose’s not-so-great hooves. Never had the saying “no hoof, no horse” struck home more; this injury was potentially career ending. Despite veterinarian and farrier intervention, we could not get Rose’s damaged hoof to hold a metal horseshoe, or keep the protective filling in the deep quarter crack.
Rose is part of a big family, she is a graduate of the Neigh Savers horse rescue program, and she helps out in their equine therapy program. Could we give Rose the exercise and people interaction she loves – while keeping her comfortable, and allowing her hoof to heal? A former volunteer and Neigh Savers horse adopter, Brooke Azcuy, had a suggestion. The Epona Institute in Paso Robles has developed polyurethane horseshoes that can be glued onto damaged hoof walls. If we could keep the hoof from getting infected, Rose had a better chance of recovery.
I contacted Monique and John Craig, the founders of EponaShoe. Rose’s hoof was not good, but Monique thought it could be helped, if we could bring her to Paso Robles for assessment. Once again, the Neigh Savers family stepped up to help – volunteers Jenny Whitman and Diane Azevedo trailered Rose and I three hours to the Epona facility, where we met with Monique and her team. Monique is passionate about helping horses overcome hoof problems, through understanding the biomechanics of the hoof, correct trimming and the use of composite material horseshoes that can flex with the hoof. She is a brilliant farrier, horsewoman, and treated Rose like she was one of her own. This is Rose, before and after, rehabbing in her new EponaShoes.