Whether you are a professional barefoot trimmer or horse owner maintaining your own barefoot horses, keeping hoof knives good and sharp is an ongoing project. "It is essential to start out with a sharp knife", says hoof care practitioner Mark Olson of Power to the Hoof from Stratford, IA .
Mark feels the back side of the knife should be sharpened first and flat, starting at the sharp edge moving back. This prevents the edge from folding over. The curved side is sharpened at an angle also from the sharp edge. Mark suggests using a motion somewhat like that of peeling a carrot and is shown here using a small, fine file. He would finish the job by addressing the hook with a fine, round file. You can learn more about how to achieve a razor sharp knife and other great professional tips by checking out Tools Of The Trade by Pete Ramey or on the EasyCare website under natural hoof care.