The birds are singing, the weather is balmy, and you and your horse are delighted to be rid of the hard, frozen ground that even a perfectly sound horse can find uncomfortable underfoot. Spring may bring its own set of hoof challenges, though, and you need to be prepared for them so your horse doesn’t develop horse hoof problems that could end up curtailing your riding time.
Warm temperatures, increased activity, and soft ground conditions that limit wear may mean that your horse’s barefoot hoof will need more frequent attention at this time of year. Horses that may go eight weeks between barefoot trimming in the winter may need a trim every four to six weeks in the spring to keep the feet well balanced. Maintaining a good trim schedule will keep feet at their healthiest, help prevent strain and lameness, and reduce the chances you’ll run into other spring-related problems.
Talk to your Natural Hoof Trimming person about what objective measures you should use to decide when your horse needs a Horse Hoof Trimming. For example, a common rule is to get a trim after no more than three-eighths to one-half inch of new growth. You can keep track of this a couple of ways. Measure the distance from coronary band to shoe (or ground) right after a trim, and start to re-measure weekly after about four weeks. Or, you can put a dot of nail polish on the top of the barefoot hoof wall, just under the coronary band, and keep track of how far it has grown down. Also, get attention ASAP if any of the following horse hoof problems develop. Click here for the rest of the article.
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