As I talk to people from day to day, I keep hearing about mud. From coast to coast and in between, we have mud. Especially my good friends in Oregon. In fact, one lady sent me her weather forecast for the next week and it ranged from “rain” to “showers” day after day after day.
Mud represents a whole lot of different problems. From hoof problems to bacterial infections, from skin problems to actual physical disorders. Unfortunately, there is no avoiding mud. Unless you live in Arizona-like me! But even in Arizona, monsoon brings on the mud at our ranch.
Hoof problems caused by mud can vary depending on the type of mud and the length of time the horse stands in the mud. Many hoof problems come from horses standing in mud all day and then going into a nice, dry barn at night. The wet-dry, wet-dry plays havoc with hooves causing all kinds of problems like brittle hooves and hooves that develop cracks. Severe drying causes separation of the laminae and can open the door to white line and abcesses.
Horses constantly standing in wet conditions suffer from soft soles and sloughing of the frog. This compromises the strength of the hooves’ support structure and came make the horse prone to sole bruising.
Thrush is also more prevelant in the mud season. A mud and manure packed hoof is a great environment for bacterial infections to set up.
Maintaining sanitary conditions around the barn is important to limit the exposure to bacteria. Also, a regular four to six week natural hoof trimming schedule helps in preventing hoof problems. But the best way to help prevent any of these problems is the use of protective hoof boots from EasyCare. Much better than any other type of hoof protection, the EasyCare hoof boot has a thick sole to prevent mud from coming in contact with the frog and hoof. The Glove, Epic, Edge, Boa and G2 all have gaiters to help prevent dermatophilosis from striking the pastern, more commonly known as “scratches” or “grease heel.”
And, when the mud freezes, the EasyCare hoof boot offers better traction and protection from the hard, uneven ground.
I’m one of the cowgirls in the group. (Heck no, I don’t show, I Rodeo!) When it comes to life’s adventures – never pull back on the reins, and remember: the world is best-viewed through the ears of a horse!