It means that the heels are pulled away from their physiological place.
The picture on the left shows a foot that has relatively well placed heels. That is to say that they’re almost placed at the largest part of the frog (bottom blue line).
The picture on the right shows migrated heels. Due to different factors, the heels can “leave” their post and travel somewhere else.
For this hoof, they are on holiday somewhere near the middle of the frog, when they should be much closer to the lower blue line.
In spite of not having the exact same photo angle for both pictures, we still can gather a lot.
Notice the difference of the blue rectangles shapes.
Left picture, the rectangle is “standing up“.
Right picture’s rectangle is “lying down“.
Left picture, the red and yellow dots are not so far apart.
Right picture, the dots had an argument and probably decided to never see each other again 😅
The green lines show the balance heel/lower limb.
If I had pictures up to the fetlocks for both feet, we would probably see that:
Left heels would sit under the middle of the fetlock joint.
Right heels would be just under the front of the joint.
Play the game of the 7 differences between the pictures if you want and visualise what’s wrong on the right hand pictures. It will help you identify it when looking at feet.
Migrated heels can cause a lot of damage, like navicular or DDFT lesions.
💡 Tip: it’s a distortion almost always found paired with a migrated toe! I’ll address that topic soon.