Tuesday, July 8, 2008

What is founder?

I know it can be confusing but basically, founder means the same thing as laminitis. You'll hear different terms like road founder and grass founder, all of which can cause founder but they all result in laminitis.

Makes you wanna say: "Well then, why don't they just say laminitis?" I guess it's because the word founder has been around since the 1300's and was a general term used to describe when a horse was sick or the hooves were affected, (which people still do), while the term laminitis has only been around since the mid 1800's when laminitis was first discovered.

Some definitions of the word founder are: to sink or to wreck or to fail utterly.

A ship that has sunk or wrecked is said to have foundered and a horse that suffers from an attack of laminitis is said to have foundered. That's a pretty good analogy since the hooves are a horses' foundation and if that foundation is damaged, the horse is, indeed, sunk or wrecked.

The good news is that more information is being discovered about laminitis every year. As the condition is more understood, so discovered are ways to prevent it. It's also now known that founder or laminitis doesn't necessarily mean permanent lameness. In fact, the opposite is true: more and more laminitic horses are being rehabilitated and healed every year through Natural Hoof Care. (See links to the left to the websites of Jaime Jackson and Pete Ramey)

In my next article, we'll talk more about laminitis: it's causes, treatment and what you can do to help prevent it.

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Please feel free to email me your horse questions and I'll do my best to answer them or at least point you to someone or someplace that can. (Scroll down to the "About Me" section and click on "View my complete profile" to send me an email) I look forward to hearing from you! ~Melanie