Strange Veterinary Hoof Terms Explained…

Thrush and Canker

4Thrush is a common bacterial/fungal
infection which affects the frog and sole of
the foot, producing malodorous, black
necrotic material particularly in the grooves
between the frog and the sole (frog sulci). If
left untreated, it can affect deeper
structures within the foot. It is most commonly seen in horses kept in damp conditions or through poor hygiene.
However, it can occur in horses kept in a clean environment, if the frog is overgrown.

Canker is a disease affecting the soles charicterised by a foul smelling
creamy exudate. Canker is similar, but a more serious condition than
thrush. Although it is rare, unlike thrush it can be difficult to solve. It is a
severe bacterial/fungal infection (proliferative pododermatitis) that
generally originates in the frog, and affects the heels, horn and underlying
structures of the hoof. The clinical signs are the development of a
foul-smelling white/grey pus in and around the frog and the presence of
granulation-like tissue which often bleeds. Lameness is often variable depending upon the depth of structures involved.

Strange Veterinary Hoof Terms Explained…

Quittor

3Quittor is a chronic, septic condition of one of
the collateral cartilages of the pedal bone 5.
Characterized by necrosis of the lateral
cartilage of the foot and one or more sinus
tracts extending from the diseased cartilage
through the skin in the coronary band region.
This results in the formulation of purulent
fistulas that open above the coronet, usually resulting in lameness. It is seldom encountered today but was common in working draft horses in the past, usually following injury to the area.

Strange Veterinary Hoof Terms Explained…

Keratoma

2A keratoma is a type of benign tumour that
grows inside the foot. It originates from the
horn producing cells, usually underneath the
coronet, and grows down the foot with the
normal hoof. When they reach the white line
area at the toe, they cause separation of the
bond between the hoof wall and sole. Once
bacteria penetrate the foot, an abscess forms.
The abcess is usually associated with a widening of the white line. An x-ray or MRI scan is needed to confirm the presence of a Keratoma. An underlying keratoma will always cause the abscess to recur. The cause is unknown but can be associated with chronic irritation or trauma.