Beeker's Blog
a dog's point of view

 

8 Steps to Hoof Health paw

 

It's International Hoof Care Week! Yea...it is an actually internationally recognized week. I may just be a pup with paws, but after hanging around with these people here at Van Beek, I've picked up a couple of things about horse hooves. So in honor of this week, I've come up with 8 Tips that will help you keep your horse's hooves healthy.

 

1. Be observant. Check your horse's hooves often, looking for signs of oozing or bad smell. Hurt hooves may have puncture wounds, cracks, wedged rocks, abscesses, or bruises.

 

2. Know the norm. Become familiar with your horse's hooves. Notice the size, shape, temperature, and blemishes. If you know what the hoof usually looks and feels like, it will be easier to spot something abnormal.

 

3. All about anatomy. Understand the basic hoof structure to know what a horse's hoof should look like. This will also help you notice anything abnormal.

 

horse hoof diagram

4. Call in the expert. Scheduling regular farrier visits can prevent potential hoof problems and will provide the general hoof maintenance that your horse needs.

 

5. Good, balanced diet. Make sure your horse's diet is meeting his nutritional needs in protein, vitamins, minerals and calories. If your horse is not eating enough, it may be due to stress from pain in its hooves.

 

6. Keep in shape. Healthy hooves require consistent exercise on good surfaces to promote and increase circulation to the hooves.

 

7. Stay out of the mud. Avoid turning out your horse in muddy areas, as hours of standing in deep mud may encourage conditions such as Thrush or Scratches. Also, changing between wet and dry environments can be hard on hooves.

 

8. Good stable management. Keep the stalls clean and dry, removing soiled shavings as they may have a rotting effect on hooves. I highly recommend using Stall Sorb to soak up moisture and reduce odor.

 

Remember, a horse's hoof says a lot about its overall health. Healthy hooves, health horse! ...There you have it, straight from the um...dog's mouth.

 

 

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