Michael J. Wildenstein, resident farrier at Cornell University’s large animal clinic, has approximately 400 different types of therapeutic shoes hanging on the wall of his clinic. Each one, he says, was made for a particular lameness or disease problem to fit an individual horse: aluminum shoes for a fatiguing jumper, plastic shoes for an endurance horse, rubber shoes for a carriage horse, titanium shoes for a horse who wears down its shoes too fast, glue-on shoes for thinned-walled horses. About 98% of them are nail-on shoes. His arsenal also includes bar shoes, shoes with frog supports, plastimer plastics for cracks, acrylics for hoof reconstruction, pads, metal plates, and even regular steel shoes.
Rob Sigafoos, chief of farrier services at the University of Pennsylvania’s New Bolton Center, is a pioneer in adhesive technology applications for athletic and injured horses. He pioneered the use of "hoof repair compounds" to rebuild underrun heels.
"The list can be very long," he concedes. A journeyman farrier certified through the American Farrier’s Association (AFA); schooled in his trade a