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Riding - Out And About

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#1 diane


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Posted 29 May 2012 - 05:35 AM

A rare day off (which turned into 6 due a cold) and as I'd booked to see a local vet who specialises in barefoot and booting, it's been a few hours out in the sun and fresh air with my horses. I went with the expectation of sizing my steeds up for a set of Easycare Gloves (with gaiters) for training and shells for endurance rides. Ho-hum - best laid plans... neither of my two steeds have hooves that will fit gloves/shells <sigh> ie their hooves are too round for the pre-set sizing!

An alternative is to go barefoot. The good point was that both steeds have the making to be individuals who could handle barefoot going. Now I've got to get my mind around the intricacies of barefoot before undertaking this discipline.

Any tips?
cheers, diane
Agecroft, Australia

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#2 shall


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Posted 29 May 2012 - 08:57 AM

Mine are all barefoot. Two have less hardy feet than the other one, but all do fine. Nutrition helps as well as genetics. In the winter, they get MSM (sulphur) and in the summer they get Omega Horseshine (stabilized flax).

One hunter pace was 2 hours over rocks, up hills and in streams. Khid finished it out in record time and was body sore for a few days afterwards, but he enjoyed himself - loves to get on the trailer and go places.

I bought Easyboots for him, but also could not get his front hooves into them. Thanks for corroborating that the fit has issues. He, too, has round and big hooves.
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#3 sheikh rissan

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 08:42 PM

Mine is barefoot. Because I rescued him, I have no idea if he was ever shod, but he has clearly had farriery consistently through his life even before his feet were neglected

He also has big, round hooves.. He's not ridden much on very hard surfaces, except in dry periods, when the clay can be hard as rock around where he is kept. He's been absolutely fine, but can be prone to the odd flare.. to be honest, he could have the farrier a little bit more often than the yard owner gets him in, as he grows his feet quite quickly.

I have to say, he's never been footsore... but we don't have a lot of gravel etc either.

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#4 VanAlma


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Posted 02 June 2012 - 02:10 PM

I've heard the Old Macs are for horses with very round feet. You might want to look into those. I've also seen Renegades and lots of endurance horses have used those but am not familiar with their fit.
If you can ride him more and more on tough ground his feet will improve. Last summer I could ride Bubba down a rocky road with boots but got more tender in the fall when the rain and wet grass set in. He was good this winter, got a bit tender this spring, and I'm waiting for the summer dry period for his feet to change again. Pasture is the culprit, but I don't dry lot, so he gets boots on his fronts.
I'd also watch for the thrush "butt" in the back of the foot. All my horses are barefoot and when I notice tenderness in anyone they have grooves in their heels from thrush (even in 100 degree dry weather). Once cleared up they walk much better. I inject Lysol into the cracks and have seen them open up in as soon as 24 hours but that was an uncommon case, I think. I'm battling a very bad case right now with a mare I rescued. We'll see how it goes but Lysol is my friend. I also put a mixture of antifungal/antibacterial cream in the cracks the day after a Lysol treatment to help. It's amazing what thrush will do to a horse.
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