xt7j3t9d5j2h https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7j3t9d5j2h/data/mets.xml Russell, John E. (John Edwards), 1834-1903. 1873  books b98-49-42334752 English Wynkoop and Hallenbeck, : New York : Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Horseshoeing. Rational horse-shoeing  / by Wildair [pseud.] text Rational horse-shoeing  / by Wildair [pseud.] 1873 2002 true xt7j3t9d5j2h section xt7j3t9d5j2h 


     11, I "E"




  Since the publication of this little volume we have made
changes in our horse shoe with a view to adapt it especially
to Army use. Our design has been to make a shoe that
any Army farrier can apply in a cold state without the use
of any other tool than a knife to prepare the hoof, and a
hammer to drive the nails. Our success in this attempt has
been so complete that we are now using the pattern design-
ed especially for Army use in all oua contract work
  The shoe is rolled without a heel calk, so that the frog-
pressure may be readily secured without heating and draw-
ing the iron :-the nail holes are pUlncheld so that the nail
furnished by us with the shce n ay be driven, without the
use of the pritchel to punch out the holes. The shoe,
being made of the best quality of iron, may be bent cold to
adapt it to the shape of the hoof.
  Officers will at cnce see what a vast saving there is in the
transportation of shoes- requiring no forge with its heavy
outfit-and which are less than half the weight of the
clumsy old patterns.

 This page in the original text is blank.











        NEW YORK:
       No. 113 Futon Street.


Entered, according to Act of CongzreF, in the year 1873, by


 in the Office of the Librarian of Congress at Washington.



IN presenting the observations contained in
    the following pages, we are aware that we
appeal to practical men who judge by results,
and have but slight patience with mere theory.
We wish, therefore, to state clearly at the
outset, that the system of horse-shoeing here-
in advocated, and the shoe offered by us to ac-
company it and accomplish its purpose, are the
result of years of patient study of nature, and
actual experiment; and that! although we have
had to contend with ignorance and interest
on the part of the farriers, and indifference
and prejudice on the part of owners of
horses, we have finally succeeded in inter-
esting the inost practical and capable men in




America, England, and France in the matter;
and, at the time of this publication, thousands
of horses, engaged in the most arduous labors
of equine life-upon railways, express wagons,
transfer companies, and other similar difficult
positions-are traveling upon our shoes, their
labors lightened by its assistance, their feet
preserved in a natural, healthy state, and their
lives prolonged to the profit of their owners
and the advancement of that cause--one of
the evidences of the progress of our age in
true enlightenment-which has for its benefi-
cent object the prevention of cruelty to the
dumb and helpless companions of our toil.

        A  e    e   -    -



THE first application of the Goodenough
      shoe is almost invariably to the feet of
horses suffering from some one of the forms of
foot disease, induced by the unnatural method
of shoeing. Our system is intended for sound
horses, to supply the necessary protection to
the feet, and to keep them in a healthy con-
dition. Our rules for shoeing, embodied in
our circular of instructions, are applicable to
sound horses, and disease must be provided
for as exceptional.
  Men are careless and, as a rule, unobserv-
ant; they go on in the old way until the horse
flinches in action or stands "pointing " in
dumb appeal to his owner, telling with mute
but touching eloquence of his tight-ironed,
feverish foot, the dead frog, and the insidi-
ous disease, soon to destroy the free action
characteristic of health.  It is when this



evidence brings the truth home to him that
the neglectful master, eager to relieve the
animal, tries our system. To such masters
we must say, do not expect that the impru-
dence and neglect of years can be remedied
in an instant. The age of miracles long ago
passed away. We do not propose to cure
by formula, or bell and book. There is no
"laying on of hands "-no magical touch of
an enchanter's wand.
  Remember always that pain is the warn-
ing cry of a faithful sentinel on the outpost,
that disease is at hand. Disease is the punish-
ment following a violation of the laws of
nature, and can only be escaped by restoring
natural conditions.
  Remember also, that "Nature," so called
by Hippocrates, the earliest systematic writer
upon medicine, never slumbers nor fails in
duty, but strives with unerring, active intelli-
gence to prevent disease, or to cure it when
it can not be prevented.
  When the measures and processes of the
physician are in harmony with the natural
intention, disease may be cured; when they



are adverse in application, the patient dies, or
recovers in spite of art.
  A great French philosopher powerfully re-
marked: "Nature fights with disease a battle
to the death; a blind man armed with a club-
that is, a physician-comes in to make peace
between them. Failing in that, he lays about
him with his club. If he happens to hit dis-
ease he kills disease; if he hits nature he kills
  We wish to be understood that in all things
we would assist and facilitate the action of
nature, under the artificial restraints of the
horse. If we fail in this, or offer obstruction,
our occupation is gone. The world has no
time to listen to our theory, no use for our
practice. And we hope that the thoughtful
readers of these pages will see in our inten-
tion, an earnest, honest purpose and belief,
and that, without affectation of science or
pretense of superior knowledge, we base all
our efforts upon nature and common sense.
  In following our instructions and attempt-
ing to use our method, have patience, and note
the result from day to day. The horse will



quickly tell you. His action will expose
quackery and unmask pretension. Ile will
be no party to a fraud, no advocate of an adver-

              SOUND HORSZS.
  A sound horse is, after man, the paragon
of animals. "In form and moving how ex-
press and admirable !"  His frame is perfect
mechanism, instinct with glowing life, and
guarded by the great conservative and heal-
ing powers of nature from disease and death.
His vitality is surpassed by that of man, be-
cause man has the endowment of soul, and in
his human breast hope springs eternal and
ilnarillation gives fresh powers of resist-
ance. Like man, the horse conforms cheer-
fully to all climates and to all circumstances.
He is equally at home
    "Whether where equinoctial fervors glow
    Or winter wraps the polar world in snow."
  Amid the sands of Arabia his thin bide and
fine hair evidence his breeding; in the frozen
north his shaggy covering defends him from
the cold storms and searching winds. The




disadvantages under which he will work are
in no way so clearly illustrated as in his effi-
ciency when exposed to the evils of shoeing.
Placed upon heel-calks, to slip about and
catch with -wrenching force in the interstices
of city pavements, or loaded with iron-clogs,
to give him " knee-action " and to " untie his
shoulders," he bravely faces his discomforts
and does to the best of his ability hismaster's
  How quickly his active system responds to
intelligent care and shows its beneficial re-
sults! And when relieved from the abuses
of ignorance, his recuperative powers re-es-
tablish the springing step of youth.

      qx ,       ,          -;      .
           muJ_;1 - t  


               CHAPTER I.
EVERY horseman finds his chief difficulty
      in the fact that he has to protect the
natural foot from the wear incident to the arti-
ficial condition in which the horse is placed in
his relation to man. In those important indus-
tries where great numbers of horses are used,
and the profit of the business depends upon
the efficiency of the animal, the question be-
comes a very serious one, and the life term of
the horse, or the proportion of the number of
animals that are kept from their tasks by ina-
bility, make the difference between profit and
loss to the great transportation lines that
facilitate the busy current of city life. But
notwithstanding the importance of this sub-
ject, upon the score equally of economy and
humanity, the world is, for the most part, just
where it was a thousand years ago, possibly
worse off, for the original purpose of shoeing
was only to protect the foot from attrition or



chipping, and but little iron was used, but, as
the utility of the operation became apparent,
the smith boldly took the responsibility of
altering the form of the hoof to suit his own
unreasoning views, cutting away, as super-
fluous, the sole and bars, paring the frog to
a shapely smoothness, and then nailing on a
broad, heavy piece of iron, covering not only
the wall but a portion of the sole also, thus
putting it out of the power of the- horse to
take a natural, elastic step.
  In a short time the hoof, unbraced by the
sole and bars, begins to contract, the action of
the frog upon. the ground, which in the nat-
ural foot is threefold-aeting as a cushion to
receive the force of the blow and thus relieve
the nerves and joints of the leg from concus-
sion, opening and expanding the hoof by its
upward pressure, quickening the circulation
and thereby stimulating the natural secretions,
-this all important part of the organization,
without which there is no foot and no horse,
becomes hard, dry, and useless.  Then fol-
lows the whole train of natural consequences.
The delicate system of joints inclosed in the




hoof feel the pressure of contraction, the knees
bend forward in an attempt to relieve the
contracted heel.  In this action the use of
the leg is partially lost. The horse endeavors
to secure a new bearing, interferes in move-
ment, or stands in uneasy torture.
  Nature frequently seeks relief by bursting
the dry and contracted shell, in what is
known as quarter or toe crack, and the mis-
erable victim becomes practically useless at
an age when his powers should be in their
  Every horseman will acknowledge that
his experience has a parallel in the picture
here presented. Many men have at various
times attempted reform, but the difficulty
heretofore encountered has been that the
mechanical application was in the hands, not
of the owners and reasoners, but in those of
a class of men who are, for the most part,
ignorant, prejudiced, and, consequently, apt
to oppose any innovation upon the old abuses
in which they have had centuries of vested
right; and it was not until the studies of Mr.
R. A. Goodenough that there were brought


        EVILS OF COMMON SHOEING.      13

to bear veterinary knowledge, mechanical
skill, and inventive faculty, to overcome the
stolidity and interest which have been the
lions in the way of true reform.


              CHAPTER II.
          FROG PRESSURE.
T HAT portion of the hoof called the " frog,"
      performs the most important visible
function in the economy of the movement
of the horse.   It is intensely vital and
vigorous.  The greater its exposure and the
severer its exertion, the more strenuous is the
action of nature to renew it. It is the spring
at the immediate base of the le- relievinq
the nervous system and joints from the shock
of the concussion when the Race Horse thun-
ders over the course, seeming in his powerful
stride to shake the solid earth itself, and it
gives the Trotter the elastic motion with
which he sweeps over the ground noiseless
upon its yielding spring, but, if shod with
heavy iron, so that the frog does not reach
the ground to perform its fanction, his hoofs
beat the earth witli a force like the hammers
of the Cyclops.
  WNith the facility to error characteristic of



the unreasoning, it has been one of the opiia-
ions of grooms and farriers that this callous,
india-rubber-like substance would wear away
upon exposure to the action of the road or
pavement, and it has been one of their cherish-
ed practices to set the horse up upon iron, so
that lhe could by no possibility strike the frog
upon the ground.
  In addition to this violation of nature, they
pare away the exfoliating growth of the or-
gan, and trinm it into the shape that suits
their fancy.
  Without action, muscular life is impossible,
the portion of the body thus situated must
die, paralyzed or withered. Motion, use, arc
the law of life, and the frog of the horse's
hoof with a function as essential and well-de-
fined as any portion of his body is subject to
the general law. Without use it dries, har-
dens, and becomes a shelly excrescence upon
a foot, benumbed by the percussion of heavy
iron upon hard roads. This is a loss nature
struggles in vain to repair, the horse begins
to fail at once. The elastic step, which in a
state of nature spurned the dull earth, becomes




heavy and stiff, and the unhappy brute ex-
periences the evils partially described in the
previous chapter.
  To restore the natural action of the foot by
putting the bearing on the frog, is the chief
object of the system we advocate, and the
Goodenough shoe is designed especially to
provide for that first and last necessity. If this
is accomplished with a sound horse, he will
avoid the thousand ills that arise from the
usual method, and, so far as his feet are con-
cerned, he will remain sound.
  If the shoe is adopted as a cure for the un-
soundness already manifested in animals that
have been deprived of the proper use of their
feet, it will cure them, not by any virtue in the
iron itself, nor by any magic in its application,
but simply by giving beneficent nature an op-
portunity to repair the ruin that the igno-
rance of man has wrought upon her perfect
  This part of our subject is so important that
we shall return to it again in subsequent
chapters, and enforce it at every point.

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             CHAPTER III.
FROM the representation of the shoe
F    in the cut, its peculiar conformation
will be observed, and the reason for these
changes from the common form we shall en-
deavor to explain as clearly as possible. In
the first place, it is very light, scarcely
half the weight of the average old-fashioned
shoe. The foot surface is rolled with a true
bevel, making that porti _n of the web which
receives the bearing of the hoof, the width
of the thickness of the wall or crust.  This
prevents pressure upon the sole, and makes
the shoe a continuation of the wall of the
foot. The ground surface of the shoe has
also a true bevel, following the natural slope
of the sole, and bringing the inner part of the
shoe to a thin edge.  The outer portion is
thus a thick ridge, dentated, or cut out into
cogs or calks, allowing the nail-heads to be
countersunk.  This arrangement gives five
       2            17



calks-a wide toe-calk, the usual heel-calks,
and two calks, one on each side, midway
between the toe and heel-thus putting the
bearing equally upon all the parts of the
  This calking has a double object. In the
common system of shoeing, to avoid slip-
ping in winter upon the ice, and in the cities
upon the wet, slimy surface of pavement, or
to assist draft, it is customary to weld a
calk upon the toe of a shoe, and to turn up
the heels to correspond. In this motion the
horse is placed upon a tripod, his weight be-
ing entirely upon three points of his foot, and
those not the parts intended to bear the shock
of travel or to sustain his weight. The posi-
tion of the frog is of course one of hopeless
inaction, and the motion of the unsupported
bones within the hoof produce inflammation at
the points of extreme pressure, so that, in case
of all old horses accustomed to go upon calks,
there is ulceration of the heels, in the form of
" corns," which the smith informs the owner
is the effect of hard roads bruising the heel
from the outside; he usually "cuts out the



corn," and puts on more iron in the form of
a " bar shoe." Or the same action which
produces corns, acting upon the dead, dry,
unsupported frog and sole, breaks the arch
of the foot so that a " drop sole " is mani-
fest, or " pumiced foot," for both of which a
" bar shoe" is the unvarying, pernicious
prescription. In the Goodenough shoe, the
calks are supplied, and the weight so dis-
tributed that the objection to the old method
does not exist.

  This is a point to which we call attention
as of great importance. In shoeing a horse
for light or rapid work with a common flat
shoe, seven or eight nail-heads protrude, and
take the force of his blow on the ground.
The foot has just been pared, and those nails,
driven into the wall and pressing against
the soft inside horn and sensitive lamina,
vibrate to the quick, and often cause the
newly-shod horse to shrink, and show sore-
ness in traveling for a day or two. No mat-
ter how skillfully shod, the horse will be all



thie better in escaping this unnecessary inflic-

Is to keep the shoe a continuation of the
crust or wall of the hoof, and to avoid per-
cussion upon the sole.

Is to follow the natural concavity of the foot
and to give it the form which will have no
suction on wet ground, wvill n ;t pick up mud,
or retain snow-balls.

                THE CALKS
Have a use fully explained.
  When the shoe thus described is set so as
to securefrogpressure, as hereinafter directed,
a horse may be shod without violation of
nature's laws; foot disease, under fair condi-
tions, will become almost impossible, and the
useless refuse-stock, broken down by the old
method, may be restored to usefulness.



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             CHAPTER IV.
IF a foot came to the farrier in a perfectly
   normal condition, never having been sub-
jected to the destructive process of common
shoeing, the directions for putting on the
Goodenough shoe would be simply, to dress
the foot by paring or rasping the wall until
a shoe of proper size laid upon the prepared
crust would give an even bearing with the
frog all over the foot; then, as the calk wore
away, the pressure would come more and
more upon the frog and the foot would re-
tain its natural state during the life-time of
the horse.
  A colt thus shod could not have a corn, for
a corn is an ulcer caused by the wings of the
coffin-bone pressing upon a hard, unelastic
substance. When the horse raises his foot
the coffin-bone is lifted upward by the action
of the flexor tendon; when his foot touches
the earth the weight of the animal is thrown



upon the same boite, and, if unsupported by
the natural cushion of the foot, the action of the
bone pressingthe sensitive sole upon iron causes
the bruise which, for lack of another name, is
called a corn. The horse thus shod would
never have a quarter crack, for that is the im-
mediate effect of contraction caused by the
absence of the expanding action of the frog
and the consequent dead condition of the hoof
from want of circulation and proper secre-
tions. The horse would be equally free from
" drop " and " pumiced " sole, seedy toe,
thrush, and kindred complaints.

  It is almost impossible to find a horse per-
fectly sound in his feet, unless one looks
(strange as it may seem) into the stables of
the Third Avenue Railroad Company, or those
of Adams' Express, or Dodd's Transfer Com-
pany, or into some of the other stables where
our shoe and system are in faithful use; we
will therefore call attention to such a case as
will be generally presented at the forge: A
good young horse, shod for several years



 This page in the original text is blank.



upon the common plan, and in the early
stages of contraction. We find he has on
wide-web shoes, weighing about twenty
ounces e ch; these may be smooth in front
and calked behind ; they bear upon the sole
and heel. In place of a frog, we discover a
point of hard, shrunken. cracked substance,
neither frog nor sole. We cut the clenches
and take off the relic of ignorance and bar-
barism, throwing it with hearty good-will in-
to the only place fit to receive it-the pile of
scrap-iron. We examine carefully to see
that no stub of nail is left in. The heels will
be found long and hard. Our object being
frog-pressure, to get the vivifying action of
this tactile organ upon the ground, we pare
down the whole wall; we soon come to signs
of a corn-perhaps a drop of blood starts; but
as we do not intend to put the weight upon
the heels, wv are not alarmed. Having cut all
we can from the heels and still finding that
the frog, when the shoe is laid on, can not
touch the ground, ice knock down the last
two calks and draw the heel of the shoe thin;
this must gize us a bearing upon the frog




and the sound part of the foot. We use the
lightest shoe, truly fitted with the rasp, not
burned on. The horse should then be work-
ed regularly, and he will experience at once
the benefit of a return to " first principles "
and natural action.

 This page in the original text is blank.




              CHAPTER V.

CONTRACTION, in a greater or less de-
C2     gree, is exhibited by all horses, of every
grade, that have been shod in the common
way, except in those more unfortunate cases
that have resulted in a breaking of the arch
of the foot, from lack of the natural frog sup-
port, when the phenomena of " dropped sole "
are found, and the usual accompaniment of
"pumiced feet."
  It may seem superfluous to say that the
powerand action of the horse are greatly re-
stricted by contraction.
  The cartilaginous fibre that forms the bulk
of the substance of the foot behind the great
back sinew is squeezed into narrow space,
the working of the joints compressed, and
inflammation at the joints, or at the wings
of the coffin-bone, is excited; in worse cases
navicular disease is established, or, from
inadequate circulation, thrush holds posses-



sion at the frog, or scratches torment the
  When simple contraction shown in the
narrow heel, dried and shrunken frog, and
" pegging " motion of the horse-is the case,
our design is at once to restore the natural ac-
tion of the foot. This must be done by ex-
pansion, and that is to be had from frog-pres-
sure, according to the directions in the pre-
ceding chapters.  If navicular disease has
commenced, and the animal is decidedly
lame, we have a difficult case. The mem-
brane of this important bone, in some cases
of contraction, becomes ulcerated, and the
bone itself may be decayed, or adhesion
between the coffin-bone and the navicular
and pastern may take place. Without ex-
pansion there is no possibility of relief;
local bleeding, poulticing, and all the drastic
drugs of the veterinary will be invoked in

  Thi.s disease, usually attributed to " heat,"
" dry 'weather," " weak feet," etc., is one ot




 This page in the original text is blank.



the common symptoms of contraction, and
can be entirely cured with the greatest ease;
nor will it ever recur if the hoof is kept in
proper condition.
  If the case is recent, shoe as advised in our
paragraph upon " Incipient Unsoundness,"
being sure to cut the heel well down, putting
the bearing fully upon the frog and three.
quarters of the foot. If the hoof is weak
from long contraction and defective circula-
tion, lower the heels and whole wall, until the
frog comes well upon the ground, and shoe
with a " slipper," or "tip," made by cutting
off a light shoe just before the middle calk,
drawing it down and lowering the toe-calk
partially. This will seem dangerous to those
who have not tried it, but it is not so. The
horse may flinch a little at first, from his un-
accustomed condition, and from the active life
that will begin to stir in his dry, hard, and
numb foot, but he will enjoy the change.
The healing of the crack will be from the
coronet down, and it is good practice to cut
with a sharp knife just above the split, and to
clean all dirt and dead substance out from the




point where you cut, downwards. Soaking
the feet in water will facilitate a cure by quick-
ening the growth of the hoof; or, a stimulat-
ing liniment may be applied to the coronet, to
excite more active growth. Bear in mind
that expansion is not from the sole upwards,
but from the coronet downwards.

                TOE CRACKS.
  The cause of this defect is the same as in
quarter crack. It appears in both fore and
hind feet. Clean the crack well, cutting with
a sharp knife the dead horn from each side of
it; shoe as advised for quarter crack, or for
the purpose of getting expansion and natural
action of the dead, shelly hoof. The dirt and
sand may be kept out of the crack by filling
it with balsam of fir, or pine pitch. Keep the
horse at regular work.



 This page in the original text is blank.


             CHAPTER VI.
T HIS miserable condition of the abused
     animal is N ature's fiercest protest against
the ignorance and carelessness of man. A
horse set upon heavy shoes, and those armed
with calks at toe and heel, such as are usually
inflicted upon large draft-horses, has his
whole weight placed upon the unsupported
sole. The frog never comes in contact with
the earth in any way, inflammation of the
sensitive frog and sole takes place, and the
arch of the sole bends down under the pres-
sure until the ground surface of the hoof be-
comes flat or convex, bulging down even
lower than the cruel iron that clamps its
edge. This is the condition of a drop sole.
This degenerate state ofthe foot has other com-
plications. Active inflammation is often pres-
ent and all the wretchedness of a pumiced foot
-the despair of owner and veterinary-is cx-
pe-ienced. The smith, whose clumsy contriv-



ance has been the cause of all the woe, has
abundant reasons to offer for the disease,
and his unfailing resort of the " Bar Shoe."
This atrocious fetter is supplemented with
leather pads, sometimes daubed with tar,
and the horse hobbles to his task.   Not
unfrequently the crust at the front of the hoof
sinks in, adhering to the sole; circulation
being cut off,

                BEEDY TOE
is then manifest.
  The only possible relief from these compli-
cations is in natural action. Contraction is
not present, but we want circulation, new
growth and absorption; we obtain it by
dressing the foot smoothly with the rasp and
putting the bearing evenly upon the frog and
a light shoe, which should be merely a con-
tinuation of the wall of the foot. Many very
bad cases shod in this way have been re-
lieved. No grease or tar should ever be



               AT THE TOE.
  Shoe as previously directed, and rasp or
cut the sole and wall at the toe into a slight-
ly hollow shape, So that you could pass a
knife-blade between the hoof and shoe. The
object of this is to relieve the hoof from pres-
sure at this point. In cases where the toe is
thin and weak, or where there is inflammation
extending to the point of the frog, remove as
much of the sole pressing against the frog as
seems feasible, and level the toe-calk, so that
the horse will bear upon the frog and side-
  It is often well to free a shrunken frog
from the binding growth of sole that has
closed in upon it, and in cases of contraction,
where this is done, a horse will recover the
action of the frog with less difficulty than
where that organ is sole-bound.

  This is a filthy, fetid disease of the frog.
By many veterinary writers it is attributed
entirely to damp stables, general nasty con-

3 1



dition of stall, yard, etc. Mayhe w ingenu-
ously remarks, in addition, that it is usually
found in animals that " step short or go grog-
gily," and that the hoof is " hot and hard."
Youatt comes to the point at once in saying
that it is the effect of contraction, and, when
established, is also a cause of further contrac-
tion. It is manifest in a putrid discharge
from the frog. The matter is secreted by the
inner or sensible frog, excited to this morbid
condition by pressure of contraction. Its cure
is simple and easy if the cause is removed.
A wash of brine, or chloride of zinc, three
grains to the ounce of water, is generally used
to correct the foulness.


             CHAPTER VII.
THE knee of a horse is a most complicated
     and beautiful mechanical arrangement,
singularly exempt from strain or disease in
any form. Bony enlargement, inflammation
of the ligaments, do not attack it. The rav-
age of the shoeing-smith-the horse's direst
enemy-seems to be exhausted upon the feet
and the sympathetic pasterns; the concussion
of iron and pavement, uncushioned by the
frog, will destroy the lower system of joints
before the knee can be shaken.
  Notwithstanding   this  perfection  and
strength, many horses bend the knee, and
stand, or travel with it bent, until the flexor
muscles shrink from lack of use. This " over
in the knees " condition is invariably caused
by imperfect use of the feet. The effect of
heel-calks and their accompaniment of corns,
making a sore in each heel, is often indicated
by the horse to his regardless owner by bend-



ing his knee. The owner asks the smith why
he does it, and the smith, who never fails to
give a reason, says he has always noticed that
horse had "weak knees."   We know of a
shoer in Worcester County, Massachusetts,
who has a wide local reputation for " doctor-
inm " weak knees. He holds that the muscles
of the leg in such cases are too short, and have
to be lengthened with thick iron heels and
calks. It is a favorite theory of this class of
shoers that they are able to correct the errors
of Providence in the horse's construction, and
piece him out with heel-calks and bar-shoes I


  If horses were not shod, they would not
interfere; it therefore follows that shoeing is
the cause of this defect. A contracted hoof,
pain from corns, or any inflammation causes a
horse to seek a new bearing. In doing this
he strikes himself. Blacksmiths make " inter-
fering shoes," welding side-pieces and super-
fluous calks upon their clumsy contrivances,
and sometimes succeed in preventing the



symptom, but they never remove the cause.
Few horses with natural feet, good circula-
tion, and shod with a light shoe, will ever
interfere.  In all such cases, take