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Keeping Shoes on in Deep Snow

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  • Keeping Shoes on in Deep Snow

    My gelding is shod up front with rim pads and carbide tips as we live in a snowy/icy place. He's on turnout half day and has pulled two shoes in three weeks. The snow is so deep right now I think he's just grabbing them off. He has great feet (normally doesn't pull shoes, no thrush ever), receives balanced nutrition (plenty of copper, zinc, biotin etc.), doesn't play alot outside (out with an older gelding), wears bell boots 24/7. Top-notch farrier has him on a 6 week reset schedule. Anyone else have trouble with pulled shoes with deep snow? Anything I can do? Will talk to farrier too next time he is out, was absent for last reset of lost shoe. TIA!

  • #2
    My gelding is shod in front with rim snow pads (no hoof supps or bell boots or anything though) but we have very deep snow right now. Neither myself or any of the other boarders are having issues though...so no help there.

    I have to think the bells just flip up in deep snow...not really sure--have you noticed? Not that it answers your question, just curious.

    Is your ground frozen or muddy underneath the snow?
    DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/


    • #3
      have you been able to find the lost shoes? That may be a huge indicator in why he is loosing them.I see two possible reasons.
      1.his hooves have softened somewhat due to being in a wet environment,ie:snow, and the nails have slipped out of the nail holes,or
      2. his pasture buddy may be stepping on his feet and catching an edge, tweaking the shoe loose.
      does he wear clips? this may help, or may rip more foot off...hard call!

      mine wear rim pads as well in the winter as well.


      • #4
        What we see in deep going, mud or snow, is leg action in front slowed enough so hinds catch the shoes. Just a problem with deep going out in fields or paddocks. This is the theory behind that old "mud sucks his shoes off" you hear in spring. No mud doesn't, horse just moves different when his legs are slowed down in resistant going of mud or deep snow. Then he gets into interference problem and loses his shoes.

        I don't really think hooves are that much wetter in snow, to soften them any unless horse has hot hoof issues.

        I have had some luck with dragging my chain harrow over the deeper snow, which seems to reduce depth some. I want shallow snow along fencelines, and they like having trails out to the big field, places to walk along checking for grazing. I do this so they don't stand in the barnyard all day long. Just an idea for "shortening" your snow depth. This would work for probably up to a foot or 18 inches, though it won't take snow down to the ground. With air out of the snow, maybe hoof action won't be slowed down too much.

        Are bell boots hard types, so they don't invert as suggested above?


        • #5
          Just happened to my TB as well - since we've spent the better part of a YEAR growing new feet, I was not happy!

          Never found the shoe - bet it's at the bottom of one of those icy pits in his paddock....

          Hoepfully he won't do this again anytime soon! Hating the weather this year!


          • Original Poster

            I talked to my farrier yesterday and he said pretty much what goodhors said. Never really experienced lost shoes from snow before. Aside from removing the snow from the paddock, there isn't much else I can do. So, FREE SNOW! Anyone want to come and get it?

            I was done with winter as soon as the first flakes flew this year.


            • #7
              You might try Jumper Quarter Bell Boots, instead of regular bells.
              They work extremely well, and can't turn inside out. But only if the fit snug, of coarse sold in s/m/l. So you have to buy one to check fit.