Common Horse Hoof Ailments and Their Treatment
As a horse owner, it is your responsibility to take care of your horse’s limb condition to ensure balanced mobility and overall well-being. Any injury, disease or damage can greatly affect the general health of the horse and make it worse with time.
Therefore, it is recommended to get your horse’s feet inspected by a vet regularly to prevent any risks. Moreover, as a caretaker, you also need to acquire knowledge about common horse hoof ailments and treatments. Read below to gain more insight into the matter.
1. Bruised Soles
Bruised soles in horses are usually caused by standing on a hard object. It can lead to sole injury as a result of concussion from the hard ground. Poor trimming or shoeing can also contribute to bruising sole sometimes.
Symptoms of bruised soles are acute lameness that can get worse with time turning the sole red. The only treatment to cure this is by restricting mobility and keeping the horse on a soft surface like a deep bed of sand. Get anti-inflammatory medicines as prescribes by the vet to help the bruises heal fast.
It can be caused by various reasons, but the most common reason is an excess of soluble carbohydrates in the digestive system of the horse. The symptoms include decreased movement, or walking from heel to toe and increased pulse.
Make sure to start a specially formulated diet high in fiber to keep the body weight in control and work with the vet to follow the prescribed treatment plan along with it. In addition to this, take the horse away from grass and keep it on a deep bed of sand.
3. Pus in the Foot
Puncture wounds or bruising are the causes of pus in the foot. The symptoms are inflammation of the foot that is caused by lameness. This leads to an increased pressure against the hoof wall that causes extreme pain. In this case, a vet should be called immediately to release pus out of the foot by digging in the infected region.
If left untreated, it can result in the infection spreading through the foot, making the leg swollen, and bursting out of the coronary band. The vet may prescribe antibiotics in case of extreme infection and also ensure that the horse is given the tetanus vaccine to stop the bacteria from entering through the wound.
The reason for thrush is being constantly exposed to the damp environment without giving any attention to the feet. A wet bedding or poor stable condition can lead to thrush. The symptoms are black and smelly discharge and lameness.
Use eucalyptus oil to scrub the foot until it become completely clean. The sides of the hoof should be trimmed to remove any damaged tissues. The best practice to prevent thrush is to oil the feet and scrub them at least twice a week and making sure to keep the horse in a dry area.
5. Sand Cracks
A sand crack begins at the coronet band and moves downwards. It is caused by poor foot maintenance or any injury. To stop the cracks from spreading, mark a groove in the wall of the hoof above or below the crack.
These were some of the most common horse hoof ailments. With proper care and balanced diet, you can control the risk of these conditions to a great deal. Use a biotin dietary supplement like Horse First hoof or NAF Five star pro feet oil to ensure complete care and maintenance of horse hoof.