Hoof Care from Robinson Animal Healthcare
The old saying goes ‘no hoof, no horse’ as, despite their large size, the legs and hooves of horses are notoriously fragile. Considering the hooves support the entire weight of the body, conditions related to the hoof can have huge implications on soundness and be time consuming to treat.
Each season brings different challenges for our horse’s hooves, from drying out and becoming brittle during the summer to standing in wet conditions during the winter months, As with most things, prevention is better than the cure and spotting problems early will speed up recovery.
Here Robinson Animal Healthcare offer tips on hoof care for your horse.
The farrier is your greatest ally in the fight against hoof conditions – make sure the horse sees the farrier every six to eight weeks. Try to make life easy for him by ensuring your horse is brought in from the field ahead of his arrival and the hooves are clean.
Provide somewhere clean and dry for the farrier to work and a hot cup of tea will always go down well – you never know when the farrier might be needed in an emergency, such as if the horse develops an abscess.
Keep an eye on the horses hooves, looking for signs the farrier is needed, such as raised clenches. However, this shouldn’t be a problem if they attend regularly.
It may sound simple, but it is essential that hooves are picked out daily and cleaned with a hoof brush and water if they are muddy. By thoroughly checking the hooves every day any issues can be caught early and action taken to minimise damage to the hoof.
Good stable management is also important to hoof health. Standing in damp, dirty bedding can predispose horses to thrush and wet conditions can also soften hooves making it easier for dirt and foreign objects to penetrate the outer structure. Heat in the hoof accompanied by the sudden onset of lameness could indicate an abscess.
Ensure the first aid kit is always stocked with Animalintex® Hoof Treatment which is the only VMD licensed multi-layered absorbent poultice available in the UK. A must have item for any horse-owners first-aid kit, Animalintex® Hoof Treatment retails at around £6.
For further information contact Robinson Animal Healthcare on 01909 735000 or visit www.robinsonanimalhealthcare.com