John Blake of Breckland Farriers Ltd offers his advice on how owners can help their horse’s hooves during the most testing time of year: Pick out your horse’s feet on a regular basis to check for injury and illness. Applying hoof oil to a clean, dry hoof can prevent too much water being absorbed into the hoof. Regular shoeing and trimming is vital to keep on top of cracks and imbalances. I often recommend that clients remove their horse’s shoes during the winter months if they aren’t doing much, especially horses who are prone to ripping shoes off. Hoof growth slows down in the winter, making it more difficult to shoe horses with poor hoof caused by shoes being torn off. Don’t leave hoof care to the last minute. Regular trimming all year round will set your horse’s hooves up for winter — prevention is better than cure.
Oiling hooves helps prevent too much water being absorbed into the hoof