Natural Hoof Care Terms

A lot of horse owners these days are moving towards doing their own barefoot trimming.  Below are some natural hoof care terms that are always good to know when looking to start doing your own hoof trimming.   EasyCare also offers some products to make the job easier such as gloves, hoofpicks, hoof jack and videos.

Anterior or Dorsal  - Located towards the front of the body (eg the front of the hoof)

Anterior/Posterior or A/P - Front to back.        

Apex of the frog - The very tip of the frog.

Bars -  The bars provide support to the internal structures of the hoof, and also have a hand in controlling the flexion and distortion of the hoof capsule upon movement.

Distal  - The bottom of an anatomical structure (eg the distal edge of the coffin bone would be the bottom; furthest away from the joint with the short pastern bone.

Distal Phalanx - Also known as the third phalanx P-3, or the coffin bone in the equine foot.

Heel Bulbs - The fleshy attachment that helps connect the heels, the frog and the bars.

Lateral - Situated at, relating to, or on the side (eg the outside of the limb)

Medial - Situated in, relating to, or extending towards the middle (eg the inside of the limb)

Medial/Lateral or M/L - From the inside to the outside or side-to-side.

Posterior or Caudal - Located towards the back of the body (eg the back portion of the limb.

Proximal - The top of an anatomical structure (eg the proximal edge of the coffin bone would be at the top, where it joins with the short pastern bone).

Ventral - The lower surface (eg the bottom of the hoof)

Dead Sole - Flaky, chalky sole material that exfoliates easily on scraping.

Live Sole - Sole tissue that is seen as waxy in appearance surface.

Quarters - You can actually consider each separate section of the hoof in quarters, but most often when you hear someone refer to the "quarters", they are talking about the sides of the hoof.  The quarters allow for the necessary flexion, and help control the amount of flexion as well.

Toe Callus - Area behind the toe wall which consists of calloused sole and protects and supports the tip of the coffin bone.

White Line - The border between the sole and the hoof wall.


Posted by Shari Murray


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