This is going to be a long post with very valid points. Read at your own risk!
In West Virginia is this famous bridge called the New River Gorge Bridge.
When it was still in the proposal stage there were multiple careful studies and schematics and models done to understand Exactly the spacing and structures needed for the under support of the bridge to securely hold the top portion safely.
A very careful analysis was made of the portions of each ingredient needed to make sturdy steel.
If the supports were too far apart the bridge would buckle. If the angle of the supports were not right, the bridge would not be sound for use.
If the elements comprising the steel were not just so, the steel would be brittle in cold or soft in heat or not be able to withstand a bit of movement or a load. Same thing with the concrete supports joining the bridge to the mountainside.
Without careful attentions to these details bridges can certainly be built, and certainly look like terrific structures. But as in the case of the Silver Bridge collapse, one small thing is not right and suddenly catastrophe strikes.
Surprisingly as the bridge was being built, the general public did not argue about the angle of the supports or the mixture of the steel.
In fact, we have never heard of a case in recent history where the general public has protested anything about an element of bridge construction, other than where it is being built or the color chosen to paint it.
Why is that?
We’d assume it’s because so many studies have been done on how to construct safe bridges that we have confidence in their ability to hold up. Plus nowadays bridges get frequent check ups.
So how does this relate to horse ownership?
If we think of a horse’s body as being the deck of a bridge and the leg structures as being the bridge supports…
And if we think of the careful balance of vitamins and minerals within a horse’s body as the careful ratio mixture used to create steel and concrete…
Then perhaps we can totally see how bridges and their construction is relevant.
If the angles of the trim or shoe are not right then the supports will either tip in or tip out of alignment. In fact kissing spine is becoming a thing more frequently and preliminary studies are showing that some cases are because the trim is not setting the legs up to be sturdy supports and so “the bridge is buckling inward”.
And if a horse does not have to correct ratios available to form sturdy products to build the supports with, then the structures can fail, sometimes catastrophically.
Would you want to frequently utilize a bridge that you can see the concrete pillars are crumbly under? Nope
But we go right on with horses who have crumbly hooves, perhaps just saying, “Oh she’s always had crappy feet.”
Well here’s the thing. If the feet don’t have the correct ratios to keep healthy then neither will other pieces of the equine body.
Next time you see a bridge, think about moving 4 of the supports apart or inwards by a foot. Would you do this (if you could)?
In all likelihood you would not do anything to mess with the construction of the bridge because you’d know you might compromise its safe function.