07-06-05, 05:18 AM
Does anyone have any thoughts on how to best treat hooves that are dry with some cracks appearing.
I have heard that applying hoof oils is merely covering the problem and not really effectual.

Any tips???

07-06-05, 05:28 AM
feed a biotin supplement and good quality feed will help, hoof greases can help keep the foot moist stopping it from drying out but by itself probably isnt enough to solve the problem, I have had great success from changing farriers, my new farrier has improved my horses feet 100 fold, she doesnt have any cracks, she doesnt trip or overreach anymore.

When shopping for Biotin supplement cheaper isnt always better, check the actual amount of biotin per gram and then figure out how much you need to feed to get the same amount of biotin per feed. I thought I was smart buying this 1.5 kg bucket for $60 and then found out I needed to feed 4 30gram scoops to get the same amount of biotin as a 15g scoop of the expensive $100 for 1.2kg.

Biocare is excellent but really expensive, there is a generic brand called hoof factor, and its exactly the same but a little cheaper, it even has the same scoop and bottle as biocare.

I would still use hoof grease or oil, talk to your farrier about the best one for you, Kohnkes own has been recommended to me by some farriers.

07-06-05, 05:30 AM
Hi Jeremy

I have my horses stand is some water while they eat their dinner of a night. This is keeping them in really good condition, as the hooves need moisture to a curtain degree. Even if you pour some water over each hoof and they stand on wet ground does the trick. I can get my shetland to stand in buckets, but not my big guy, and thats how I do it.

Hope this helps.

07-06-05, 05:32 AM
I have seen a product (on ebay i think) that are like bell boots that you soak in water then put them on. I dont think they were all that expensive about $40 for memory.. well worth having a look


07-06-05, 05:37 AM
Hi Jeremy, hoof oils can help, but I have found working from the inside out is a much more effective way. My stockhorse had very dry, flakey hooves which would crack very easily, I tried oiling and this did help with the flaking, but I then went on to try feed additives. I tryed Bio Bloom and this was quite good but is very expensive to use, I have now got on to Mega Horse and it has made a great difference. His feet are now looking good, he does sometimes get a small crack close to the bottom of the hoof but generally his feet are great. It does take time for this to work but long term it is a very good outcome. I am so happy I have put my youngstock on the same feeding program. Great side effect is when you feed for hoof problems you get a fantastic coat as well.
Good Luck, Jen

07-06-05, 05:47 AM
Water is the best, its natural, free, easy to apply and wont damage the hoof at all.

Daily soaking is recommended. You can get all kinds of expensive things to do this but just hosing each day, standing in a puddle or on wet carpet is good. Ive taught my pony to stand in two rubber feed bins filled with water!!! Im sure if you are handy you can make a set of water bell boots - might have a go at making a pair of these myself.

Its also very helpful if you horse can be in dewy grass over night.

Hoof oil will not penetrate more than 1mm which does bugger all (can look nice a shiney though) :)

07-06-05, 10:42 AM
Feed 5g Kerabol (half a tsp) morning and night. it's amazing, and promotes really healthy hoof growth rather than just lots of hoof growth. the container lasts about 10 weeks and I give a container then stop for about six months.

07-06-05, 11:17 AM
Another vote for soaking their feet/hosing/standing on wet carpet. Hoof oils prevent moisture from being absorbed into the hoof (as oil repels water) therefore drying the hoof out so I would avoid oils at all costs!

2 tablespoons of rosehips in each feed does wonders from improving hoof quality from the inside as it contains biotin in natural form. Often the expensive biobloom stuff isn't absorbed or used as effectively by the horse's body as if they got it through natural means.

The rosehips will also make the coat shine too!

07-06-05, 02:01 PM
Simone - owner of Zari (young beautiful anglo arabian mare)

Hi Jeromy

I used to put alittle bit of canola oil in my horse's feed. It not only promotes shiny coats but I believe it helps their hooves. I have just recently bought a product from the produce for dry cracked hooves that has vitamins and calcium I think in it. I will find out tomorrow what it is called. But I bought it for about $21 and it should last a few months. Only need to feed about a small amount once a day. Ask your local produce if they know of anything and yes definately ask your farrier. I would consider a new one as my mare had good feet until the last farrier and she almost ended up lame. He did such a poor job and now I have to get my mare's feet back in shape. I think wetting the area well where she eats her dinner is a good idea too.

:) Simone

07-06-05, 06:32 PM
I agree with Simone about Canola Oil. Canola Oil works well when attempting to promote a shiny coat and the benefit from the omega 3,6,9 fatty acid oils does transfer to the feet. The recommended feeding rate for coat condition is 15mL/100Kg bodyweight. Therefore your average horse(500Kg), kinda average, would require about 75ml. The benefits from adding oil to the diet will take about 2-3 weeks to make a difference to the human eye.It is also a very handy form of cool fuel provided that it is fed at quantities no greater than 50mL/1Kg total feed intake daily, 3- 5% of the total ration. Horses generally find it less palatable in quantities over that amount.

Anyhow, back to feet. The overall diet of the horse, (inside out) is the biggest factor in promoting hoof quality. Applying oils to feet in certain conditions is not entirely useless, eg, (under frog, wall only etc). For example in really wet conditions, applying oil to the frog will inhibit uptake of moisture which will help if mother nature gets her finger out. Having said that you can not underestimate nutrition. Inside out is the way to go. Provide a vit/min supplement as the majority of our pastures are so degraded now that additional supplementation can be only beneficial. If your wrong and can not afford blood tests than they will only wizz out what they don't need.

I took the shoes off my paint gelding a couple of weeks ago, he's bludging at the moment. He sooked for a couple of days after the deed (can't blame him, it must have been weird), however I watched him fly flat out this arvo at feed time waiting for his dinner. I mean flat out (gallop), no soreness, no visible splits or cracks to the hoof. His feet look exactly like they were 2 weeks ago when he was trimmed, except for the new growth from the coronary band. This horse was shod as a youngster at 2 years, (which I do not advocate), and has been shod ever since, (Full-Time). Like I said, no cracks, no splits, no excuses.

Anyhow, I thought I'd add my 2 bobs worth. One last thing.This is my first posting but the reference to CuS04 (Copper Sulfate) in the archives is disturbing. I'd be staying away from any advice Patricia Colby has to offer, considering the fact that she has admitted to killing horses with her methods in the past. The only thing I would ever use CuSo4 for (bluestone), in any situation applicable to horses is Algal growth in troughs, and I'm not that lazy. I scrub my tubs. I was about to post this reply when I recalled the importance between the Calcium : Phosphorus ratio in horse rations, especially in Qld where the closest thing we have to Meadow hay is Rhodes grass , which is like trying to find a needle in a haystack, (quality that is). Lucerne can average 6:1 which can lead to tying up and heaps of other #####, (Arrogrance, agressive behaviour), etc.

Too tired. Too late. Anyhow, agan, hope my post has been of some assistance.

Kind Regards

08-06-05, 12:44 AM
I also agree with feeding oil but not with biotin. Where I was working for several years had a horse with terrible problems in the hooves - seedy toe and terrible cracking and breaking away, and Biotin twice daily for a year ( expensive top of line product) was completely ineffective. He was then changed to the product Equilibrium and within 6 months his hooves were completly fixed and "normal". I have also heard from others who have had the same problem with Biotin. One bag of Equilibrium lasts one horse for a year also as compared to 3 - 4 months Biotin - same price.

08-06-05, 02:36 AM
Does everyone just wet the ground where the horses stand? Isnt that a huge waste of water?

anyway my horse has shocking feet and they are much better since i started feeding equilibrium. It is very economical and seems to have made a huge difference.

08-06-05, 03:38 AM
My pony always had cracked feet. She was healthy and the hoof was good strong hoof, but they always cracked, despite more than regular trimming. She had a fungus, or something (I was little so memory's a bit hazy) and I had to spray CuSO4 solution on her feet everyday. Sandcracks, I think they were... hmm... anyway, CuSO4 cleared them up. Never stopped spraying her feet, and told her new owners to do the same. She hasn't had a problem since.

08-06-05, 11:58 AM
Jinks there are a few common ways to soak the feet

1. stand their feet in buckets of water
2. stand them in 'hoof bath' (shallow area with sides to put water in)
3. stand them on wet carpet
4. use soaking boots

so yeh i personally would never just hose the ground due to the water shortage! I usually reuse the water in the buckets to wash him after work.