A new way of looking at Navicular syndrome and Ringbone

My Blog

About Us

A second chance, for horses with Ringbone and Navicular

Traditional shoes confine the foot to one medial/lateral plane.The CRS, provides media/lateral self adjustment.

CRS pilot study

In April of 2018, we began a pilot study, to track and document the progress of the horses fitted with CRS shoes. Dr. Ben Hufnagle, designed the parameters of the exam, and oversees the data collection. The page below is a sample

of one of parameters, used in the data collection.

About me

As a farrier for over 30 years, I've been fortunate to be associated with many great horses. Some have been national champions, and some have been faithful companions, and teachers. 

As I gained more experience, I began to focus my practice towards problem cases, and have been fortunate to work with many good veterinarians, to whom I hope to be a trusted advisor, and to the horses, I hope to be a good student. 

As a horse lover, its my dream job. 

With all the advances in veterinary medicine, imaging, pharmacology, etc., we now have more tools than ever, when it comes to helping horses, with lower limb arthritis.  Commonly referred to as Ringbone and Navicular disease. There are however, horses that don't respond to, even the most advanced treatments. Those are the ones that keep me awake.

Many years ago, I began to notice that horses with Navicular disease, were more comfortable, when provided with pea gravel, as footing in their enclosure. It baffled me for years. What was it about pea gravel, that helped?

A couple of years ago, I started shoeing a horse, that was an especially difficult navicular case. He spent a lot of his time laying down, and was very difficult to work on, due to his pain level.

I had tried all the latest shoeing techniques, but nothing was helping. In fact, the more medial/lateral support I added, the worse he seemed. The owner was forced to consider euthannasia.   

With nothing to lose, I decided to try a new direction. I did the unthinkable, I removed the medail/lateral support, and gave the horse the ability to self adjust, the medial/lateral plane of his foot.

What I had done, was mimic a deformable substrate, like peagravel!

He was not immediatly sound, but he did seem a little more comfortable, and to my surprise, he no longer pointed one front foot in front of the other. He very quickly adopted a more normal stance, with both front feet squarely beneath his shoulders

That horse was characterized as grade 4 lame, when I began working with him, after 3 months in the Caudal Relief Shoe, he was graded a -1. 

The patent pending, CRS is by far the most promising mechanical option I have ever used.

Case 005 "Linda"

11/15/17 10 year old QH mare, diagnosed with Desmopathy of the suspensary ligament of the navicular bone, treated with Osphos, joint injections, and traditional shoeing for Navicular syndrome. Obvious lameness at a trot.

After 85 days in the CRS shoes, "Linda" is ready to resume training.

013 "Rain"

"Rain" is an aged APHA mare, that retired from the show ring, due to lameness. She now resides at a therapeutic riding center. As the video shows, her lameness had progressed to the point that she was no longer able to be ridden, she spent most of her time laying down. She been shod twice with CRS shoes and is doing very well! 

With continued progress, she'll resume her duties as a therapy horse.

"Rain" at 6 months

As you can see, "Rain" is not totally sound in this video, but the goal is to improve the horses' quality of life, and I think we did that.

CRS composite shoes

These videos accompany the blog post of "Disease progression "


What we do

Providing help for owners and vets, on difficult lameness cases of all kinds.

Specialized clinics for horse owners.

Upcoming clinics

Join us at Ontop Stables, Charlotte NC

Dates: TBA


"I couldn't be more pleased, with my horses improvement.  He's much more comfortable." 

Rodney W.

If you own a horse that has been diagnosed with Navicular syndrome or Ringbone, you may think his useful life is over. That may not be the case. The CRS is a mechanical option, that has given some horses, a new lease on life.


Helping people, helping horses

The CRS shoe is not in production at this time, I make each one by hand.

The goal right now, is to show the CRS to as many vets and farriers as possible. Im also seeking people who are willing to host clinics and workshops, to insure trimming protocol, and discuss pads and other considerations. I've already made all the mistakes, no need to repeat those!

I'm more than willing to travel, if you have a difficult case, or if you would like to host a clinic, let me know!


             Riley Henson

Contact Us

Drop us a line!

Better yet, see us in person!

We love our customers, so feel free to visit during normal business hours.

Caudal Relief Shoe

140 Maryland, Bloomfield, NM 87413

(505) 716-1800