Esperanza, or “Espy,” is a 3 year old female goat who lives at Charlie’s Acres Farm Sanctuary.
Espy has some mild neurological symptoms and was born with only partially developed rear
hooves. Her underdeveloped hooves made it painful for her to walk and bear weight on her
hind legs for even a short time or distance.
In fall of 2020, the amazing team at Charlie’s Acres reached out to Dr. Ilana Strubel, our Partner
veterinarian in the San Francisco Bay area, who wanted to know what could be made to assist
Espy in increasing her comfort and mobility. We began by asking the Dr. Strubel and the
sanctuary staff to try Espy with partial temporary splints to help us understand if her discomfort
was caused just by her soft and undeveloped hooves making contact with the ground, or if it
was also painful for her to load and bear weight through the abnormal bones in the ends of her
hind legs. We also asked for them to have radiographs taken so we would be able to see what
bony anatomy was present or absent.
The radiographs showed that Espy was missing many of the bones in both distal limbs, but the
splint testing showed that she was already much more comfortable with the temporary padded
bandages. With that preliminary success, the rescue forged ahead and had Dr. Strubel create
the impressions for us to build her a set of custom hybrid orthotics to support her joints,
protect and cushion her hooves, and level the height difference between her two hind limbs.
Espy took to the devices almost immediately and now can cruise around the sanctuary with her
other goat and animal friends. We are so proud to have been a part of this opportunity to help
Espy reach comfort and mobility! You can keep tabs on her progress with Charlie’s Acres social
media accounts where she often appears.