Conducted at the commission of Peter Stübbe KG
 by the Dr. Steinbichler Laboratory, Endorf,
Germany (Abridged version).

1. Terms of reference

The aim of the study was to determine the deformation of a horse`s hoof under load.

The deformation was examined on a bare hoof, a conventionally shod hoof and a hoof fitted with a Unicorn Integrated Horseshoe.
2. Trial set-up and execution
The study was carried out with a ruby impulse laser of 0.694 micrometer wavelength.
The trial set-up is shown in illustration 5.

The holograms were photographed with a pulse separation of 800us while the weight of the horse rested on one hoof.

The laser impulses were released by a trigger system (illust.1)

Illust. 1: Trigger system of laser impulses

3. Findings

Deformation barefoot:

The picture of the hologram shows an even fringe pattern across the whole hoof.

Illust. 2a: Deformation barefoot

Illust. 2b: Graph of the deformation along the cross-section

Deformation of shod hoof:

The fringe pattern shows a distinct kink. This kink can also be observed in the diagram below. Natural hoof deformation is hindered by the conventional metal shoe.

Illust. 3a: Deformation of shod hoof

Illust. 3b: Graph of the deformation along the cross-section

Deformation with hoofshoe:

The picture with hoofshoe shows a deformation similar to that in the picture of the unshod hoof.

Illust. 4a: Deformation with hoofshoe

Illust. 4b: Graph of the deformation along the cross-section

4. Summary

The test produced the following two findings:

With a conventional, nailed-on shoe the natural deformation of the hoof is hindered.
This is made visible by a kink in the fringe pattern.

The hoofshoe allows an unhindered deformation of the hoof. The fringe pattern runs evenly over the whole surface. The deformation process is basically the same.

Illust. 5: trial set-up