For many horse owners, winter time means dealing with snow. Whether your horse is barefoot or shod, snow can build up in the hooves and create a hard ball. This packed snow can be treacherous for your horse to walk on, as they teeter on the snow balls in their feet. How can this be minimized?
There are a few things you will want to consider first to prevent snow build up in hooves. If the horse wears shoes, you will want to have the farrier add snowball pads in winter. These pads sit between the shoe and the hoof, and will pop the snow off the sole as the horse walks. If your horse is barefoot, ensuring they are trimmed properly and kept on a consistent schedule will help prevent snow balls from forming.
After the above points are considered, what else can you do to help reduce snow build up? Adding a slick substance to the bottom of the hoof can help keep snow from sticking. Here are some suggested products that are safe to use:
While it has been suggested in the past, WD 40 or any type of chemical lubricant is not suggested because it can be an irritant. Steer clear of anything not safe for your own skin.
I hope these suggestions will help keep your horse's hooves snow free this winter season.
The Info Pony