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Author Topic: trimming feet  (Read 6260 times)

davet

  • Joined Sep 2016
trimming feet
« on: November 07, 2016, 09:26:14 am »
Hi,

I'm aware that the modern advice for foot trimming is to do it a lot less ("only when it needs it") then it used to be.

Is this page good guidance?

http://www.raisingsheep.net/how-to-trim-sheep-hooves.html

Thanks


Foobar

  • Joined Mar 2012
  • South Wales
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2016, 10:07:00 am »
Yes.


If you are interested, Agnes Winter has written a book on lameness if you want to learn more about foot troubles and trimming, it has lots of photos:  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lameness-Sheep-Agnes-C-Winter/dp/1861267215/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1478513097&sr=8-6&keywords=agnes+winter

Foobar

  • Joined Mar 2012
  • South Wales
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2016, 10:07:54 am »

davet

  • Joined Sep 2016
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2016, 10:11:24 am »
This is also useful:  http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/lifesci/research/greengroup/farmersandvets/footrotinsheep/

> Do not foot trim sheep with overgrown feet unless it is affecting their ability to walk on many farms long feet will wear away naturally.

Interesting, and quite bold.  So even if they looked like "Overgrown Sheep Hoof" on the link in the OP I should still leave them alone.

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2016, 10:20:24 am »
Interesting, and quite bold.  So even if they looked like "Overgrown Sheep Hoof" on the link in the OP I should still leave them alone.

OK, let's look at the 'before' photo in your first link davet:



Quote
In the image above you can see a very overgrown sheep hoof with growth curling over the pad or sole of the foot and down from the heel. This condition makes it easy for bacteria, bedding or mud to get caught between the hooves or in the space between the overgrown flap and the healthy hoof, creating an ideal environment for the anaerobic bacteria which cause hoof rot.

Personally, I've been leaving hooves like that well alone. Since sheep walk on the edges of their feet, as long as the foot is still standing straight on the ground, I'm actually quite pleased when I see the hoof curving under like that, as it means there's no pocket developing (an ongoing problem with our sheep). My worry would be that if you trim the foot as suggested (see pic below), the hoof wall might start coming away from the base, causing a 'shelly hoof' pocket that dirt and stones can get trapped in.



Any thoughts folks? have I got this wrong, and would you trim the hoof in the first picture?
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

twizzel

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2016, 10:44:03 am »
One of our shearlings has overgrown feet like in that picture, she was lame on it and had a bit of scald in there back in September but we didn't trim. She's sound now but mud was getting in under the overgrown bit and making her sore, so I will probably ask our shearer friend to have a look in May when she's shorn.

YorkshireLass

  • Joined Mar 2010
  • Just when I thought I'd settled down...!
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2016, 01:34:46 pm »
Interesting, and quite bold.  So even if they looked like "Overgrown Sheep Hoof" on the link in the OP I should still leave them alone.

OK, let's look at the 'before' photo in your first link davet:



Quote
In the image above you can see a very overgrown sheep hoof with growth curling over the pad or sole of the foot and down from the heel. This condition makes it easy for bacteria, bedding or mud to get caught between the hooves or in the space between the overgrown flap and the healthy hoof, creating an ideal environment for the anaerobic bacteria which cause hoof rot.

Personally, I've been leaving hooves like that well alone. Since sheep walk on the edges of their feet, as long as the foot is still standing straight on the ground, I'm actually quite pleased when I see the hoof curving under like that, as it means there's no pocket developing (an ongoing problem with our sheep). My worry would be that if you trim the foot as suggested (see pic below), the hoof wall might start coming away from the base, causing a 'shelly hoof' pocket that dirt and stones can get trapped in.



Any thoughts folks? have I got this wrong, and would you trim the hoof in the first picture?

I was taught to trim back a hoof like that first photo - but that was several years ago with a very old-school teacher. Be interested in opinions :)

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2016, 01:43:14 pm »
I would certainly trim a foot like the first photograph, but curve the cut to leave the "bulb" at the back of the foot in place as I find this holds the horn of each clee under tension so a pocket doesn't develop.  I wouldn't trim the horn at the front as low as the second photograph - I lay the footshears flat against the clee so the horn is always the depth of the blade proud of the base of the foot.  With good grazing on heavy clay there's little chance of horn overgrown like the first photograph wearing away.

davet

  • Joined Sep 2016
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2016, 01:52:52 pm »
The wider bit, which I think you're calling the "bulb", which I was thinking of as the "heel" is what made me look at this again.  When we bought our sheep I remember being shown trimming off any really flappy bits down the long sides, but thinking back that might have been for the same of a demonstration, rather than "this particularly needs doing".

pharnorth

  • Joined Nov 2013
  • Cambridgeshire
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2016, 05:54:18 pm »
Would I be right in thinking that if you are showing sheep,there is still an expectation that the feet look 'tidy'?

shep53

  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Dumfries & Galloway
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2016, 06:26:52 pm »
Unless the sheep was limping I wouldn't give the foot in the first picture a second look and 30yrs ago I was trimming all feet twice a year as was the advice at the time  !           YES if you are showing tidy feet look better and help the sheep to stand square

TheSmilingSheep

  • Joined May 2013
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2016, 06:51:40 pm »
I'm with womble and the other 'leave well alone' posts.... Since we've very intentionally reduced trimming to absolute necessity we've been getting fewer issues...

Black Sheep

  • Joined Sep 2015
  • Briercliffe
    • Monk Hall Farm
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2016, 08:15:30 pm »
Is this page good guidance?

http://www.raisingsheep.net/how-to-trim-sheep-hooves.html

Worth noting that it appears to be an American site and thus recommended practices may vary. Environmental conditions, other farming practices and even the tendencies of the blood lines out there may be very different.

The biggest alarm bell to me with the article is this bit that says "It's obvious that finishing the job will be good for the sheep and a clean, trimmed hoof won't give bacteria anywhere to hide". Many things that seem "obvious" actually turn out to be harmful when you properly test them and as for bacteria having "nowhere to hide", these are microorganisms that coat every surface - they can hide in the microscopic creases of the hoof surface!


clydesdaleclopper

  • Joined Aug 2009
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2016, 09:33:52 pm »
Isn't it a picture of a goat hoof rather than a sheep  ???  My goats get trimmed regularly, my sheep only at shearing if they are really overgrown.
Our holding has Anglo Nubian and British Toggenburg goats, Gotland sheep, Franconian Geese, Blue Swedish ducks, a whole load of mongrel hens and two semi-feral children.

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: trimming feet
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2016, 09:49:09 pm »
^ I was just thinking that, CC. If it is a sheep, it's a very hairy one!


Blacksheep - in the link, they say that footrot bacteria are anaerobic. If so, trimming to expose them to air does have a sort of logic to it don't you think?
« Last Edit: November 07, 2016, 09:50:49 pm by Womble »
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

 

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