A basic part of horse hoof care is simply picking out the mud, manure, stones and other debris from the sole of your horse's hooves. It is simple and yet, this one of the most neglect parts of horse care. Keeping your horse's hooves clean goes a long way to help prevent common hoof ailments. At times, your horse may get small stones lodged in the grooves of the frog, which can cause bruising. Picking out your horse's hooves also removes packed mud or snow, which can make it uncomfortable for your horse to walk.
Cleaning your horse's feet will allow you to see problems such as a puncture wound from something like a nail. Picking up fine horseshoe suppliers is also very important. Keeping your horse's feet clean and dry as much as possible will help prevent thrush. The flooring of the stable should not be damp and allow for drainage. Your horse's paddock area should provide drainage to minimize the amount of time he has to stand in water and mud. Most of the moisture your horse's hooves need come from within the hoof itself and is provided by a healthy diet. Applying a hoof dressing can improve the moisture content of hooves and help prevent them from cracking. Rubbing hoof dressing on all parts of the hoof including the hoof wall, frog, heel and coronet can stimulate healthy new hoof growth. However, you should not apply hoof dressing too often as it may prevent the hooves from absorbing moisture naturally. In the wild, a horse's feet wear down about the same rate as they grow. A domestic horse's hooves typically do not wear down as quickly since their hooves may be shod preventing them from wearing naturally, or simply because they are not subjected to such severe living conditions and consequently their feet grow faster than can be worn down. There are primarily two kinds of horseshoes to choose, the Steel Horseshoes and Aluminum Horseshoes. In general, hooves need to be trimmed every six to eight weeks requiring the routine care of a professional farrier. The services of a reliable and experienced farrier are vital to helping keep your horse's hooves healthy. When choosing a farrier, ask other horse owners in your area and your veterinarian for a recommendation.
Do not wait until you need a farrier before trying to find one. Your farrier can help you decide whether or not your horse needs to be shod. Horses that are ridden a lot or work on hard terrain may need horseshoes or boots to protect their hooves. If your horse's hooves wear too much, the protective outer covering starts to be lost and the foot can become sensitive causing lameness. On the other hand, if your horse is more of a field ornament to be looked at or is only ridden occasionally then he most likely doesn't need to be shod. Without regular trimming, a horse's hooves will grow too long and can lead to hoof splitting, chipping, cracking and lameness. Long hooves can put your horse's leg limbs out of balance. Hooves need to be trimmed to keep them at the correct length and shape so contact with the ground will be uniform and will not cause the hoof to chip or split.