Seedy toe occurs when layers of the inside of the hoof wall separate at the white line creating a cavity which starts from the sole and may extend right up to the coronet. The layers that separate are the sensitive and insensitive laminae layers. The cavity of seedy toe can been seen on the underside of the foot as a soft area around the white line. This is where the cavity is being filled in with crumbling weak horn.
When seedy toe causes problems dirt manages to get into the cavity and create infection.
No one knows exactly why seedy toes starts but it is likely to be due to either
- Damage done by laminitis or
- Poor nutrition resulting in weak horn growth. Poor nutrition can also be a result of inadequate digestion of good food eaten.
Cavities can be cleaned thoroughly and filled with cotton wool or Stockholm tar. A broad webbed shoe will hold the dressing in place. If the cavity cannot be filled easily the overlying horn can be taken away in order to allow fresh health horn to grow down. If infection occurs a foot will need to be tubbed and poulticed regularly. After treatment supplements are necessary to improve horn growth and to help prevent recurrence of laminitis.
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