Hoof Care and Your Horse
Written by Loryn Lamport, our Equestrian Manager.
Shoes or No Shoes? That is the Question
There are many options and opinions when it comes to whether to put shoes on your horse or leave them “barefoot”. The right answer depends on your horse’s general hoof condition, the type of activities they normally do, and your personal preference for your horse. Many horses that are involved in heavy work or competitions like racing or jumping will need to wear some type of shoe made of either steel or aluminum. The shoes help them keep their feet together as they perform these activities.
Good Farriers are Extremely Helpful
For those of you who are unfamiliar, a farrier is a person specializing in equine hoof care. They trim and balance the horses’ hooves and sometimes even place the horses’ shoes on their hooves. Good farriers are very important to help the owners with advice and craftsmanship to achieve the goals and needs of both themselves and their horse. Farrier care is generally needed anywhere from every 4 to every 7 weeks, whether it is for just a trim of natural hooves or a full set of all 4 shoes.
There are also a variety of supplements that can be added to a horse’s feed that have extra nutrients like Biotin that help horses’ hooves grow faster and stronger, as well as conditioners to help keep the hooves softer or harder depending on the conditions of the terrain they reside in.
The Equestrian Center at Golden Ocala offers an experienced staff to provide excellent care for your horses. Members are welcome to bring in the farrier and horse trainer of your choice!