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keratex hoof hardener or hoof gel??

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  • keratex hoof hardener or hoof gel??

    Anybody think one is better than the other? Short story is that my TB has not so good feet, but he's now barefoot and they are getting better. I'd like to think I'm doing all that I can ie Farriers Formula, a good diet, and very frequent trim schedule, and I'm also looking at Keratex but don't know which product to pick. He has a foot that tends to flatten out even with a four week trim cycle, and I would like to harden the hoof wall to keep it from flattening/flaring and also toughen it up so he can stay barefoot. Opinions??

  • #2
    I use both, depending on the condition of the foot. For the horse with tough walls that never crack and has no trouble holding shoes/nails, I'll just use the gel to help protect them in the wet part of the year (what's that, 10 or 11 months this year...?). For the horse that has shelly, cracking walls, or trouble keeping shoes on, I do the hardener. If your horse just transitioned to barefoot, I'd be inclined to go with the hardener. I wonder if the Keratex website has any info that might help point you at one or another?

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    • Original Poster

      #3
      Thanks Horsepoor. That's the direction I'm leaning in. He has been barefoot since late November. I'm trying to harden up the hoof wall a bit so think the hardener may be the way to go...the site muddied the water for me a bit by saying that the gel prevents the problems that the hardener addresses. He doesn't have too much trouble with cracks although does tend to chip with little provocation. HARDER is what I'm after!

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      • #4
        I'd definitely fo with the hardener for now. But if your horse is having so many problems 6 months fater having his shoes pulled, it sounds like he isn't getting trimmed properly.
        Topline Leather -- Bespoke, handwoven browbands & accessories customized with Swarovski crystals, gemstones, & glass seed beads. The original crystal braid & crystal spike browbands!

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        • #5
          Sounds like the hardener would be best - but - Keratex's importer's customer service rivals SmartPak' s- you should give them a call if you are still debating.

          http://www.keratex.net/

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          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by Frizzle View Post
            I'd definitely fo with the hardener for now. But if your horse is having so many problems 6 months fater having his shoes pulled, it sounds like he isn't getting trimmed properly.
            Maybe I wasn't clear enough but he's doing well. He hasn't been in work since his shoes were pulled due to location - WI and no indoor - and has only been back in light work for a couple weeks. I want to prevent chipping and flattening which is why I'm investigating the Keratex. He's totally sound in the pasture and the arena but I'd also like to trail ride him and want to give him every advantage so I want to be proactive.

            Thanks for the info on Keratex customer service. I will give them a call!

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            • #7
              Robyn in gray

              Anybody think one is better than the other? Short story is that my TB has not so good feet, but he's now barefoot and they are getting better. I'd like to think I'm doing all that I can ie Farriers Formula, a good diet, and very frequent trim schedule, and I'm also looking at Keratex but don't know which product to pick. He has a foot that tends to flatten out even with a four week trim cycle, and I would like to harden the hoof wall to keep it from flattening/flaring and also toughen it up so he can stay barefoot. Opinions??

              What part of the hoof capsule do you want to make stronger?

              whatever their form, both Keratex and Crossapol are great products for hardening the wall without making it too hard, primarily because they contain plasticizers that slow the action of fixatives, the chemicals each contains that form crosslinks with protein chains. Unfortunately, the very characteristics that make them effective for hardening the wall makes them inferior to any product formulated specifically for hardening the sole because the most effective sole tougheners DO NOT contain plasticizers that slow the formation of crosslinks.
              Tom Stovall, CJF
              No me preguntes cualquier preguntas, yo te diré no mentiras.

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              • Original Poster

                #8
                Tom, I "think" the hoof wall. I don't think he needs the sole toughened up but since he's on soft footing I'm can't be sure. I'm thinking a stronger hoof wall would keep them from flattening out and help keep the shoes on if we go that route again. I know that there are better options for toughening the sole, but doesn't Keratex also help with that in a more limited basis?

                Which do you prefer, the Crossapol or the Keratex? Thanks!
                Last edited by Robyn; May. 10, 2011, 07:23 AM. Reason: another question

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                • #9
                  Robyn in gray

                  Tom, I "think" the hoof wall. I don't think he needs the sole toughened up but since he's on soft footing I'm can't be sure. I'm thinking a stronger hoof wall would keep them from flattening out and help keep the shoes on if we go that route again. I know that there are better options for toughening the sole, but doesn't Keratex also help with that in a more limited basis?

                  The plasticizers in Keratex limit its effectiveness as a sole toughener and make it less than cost-effective for that application.

                  Which do you prefer, the Crossapol or the Keratex?


                  For wall application, I find both to be equally effective. As a consequence, I recommend whichever is cheapest.
                  Tom Stovall, CJF
                  No me preguntes cualquier preguntas, yo te diré no mentiras.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Tom Stovall View Post

                    The plasticizers in Keratex limit its effectiveness as a sole toughener and make it less than cost-effective for that application.

                    Interesting observation, I definitely agree with your other comment(s) regarding this product, so my question would be: What product would you recommend specifically as a sole toughener? TIA.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Keratex is far superior to Crossapol

                      I took the suggestion and called Keratex customer support on keratex.net

                      Keratex Hardener and Gel are really two different products. The Hardener is ideal for hardening, strengthening, toughening and managing moisture. It should be applied to the outer hoof wall and the sole. It should not be applied to the frogs or soft tissue heel bulbs.

                      The Gel is to be used if a horse's hooves are in basically great shape, and you simply want to manage moisture. It should be applied to the sole, frog, heels and outer hoof wall.

                      Basically you should use one product or the other, not both. But, you can use the hardener on the sole and hoof wall, and the gel on the frogs and heels at the same time if you want.

                      I've used the keratex hardener on my horses for many years and find it is ideal on the soles. Seems like Tom has another view, but that's the way of the horse world, isn't it?
                      Last edited by MardiGrasRider; May. 10, 2011, 11:01 AM. Reason: typo

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                      • #12
                        I've also used Keratex hoof hardener on my horses' soles for toughening with good results. Just curious tho -- if not Keratex, what products would you recommend for toughening the soles?
                        Thanks.

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                        • #13
                          I believe Durasole for soles.

                          Caitlin
                          Caitlin
                          *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
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                          • #14
                            I've also been using durasole on the soles, then keratex for the walls.

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                            • #15
                              thumbs up for keratex, but with an addition

                              I've used the keratex hoof hardener on an as needed/seasonal basis for probably 8 years to help keep my OTTB's thin, shelly hoof wall from chipping up badly; that means mostly during the wet spring and fall we have here in the north country. He's been barefoot for most of that time. (Last wore shoes 7 years ago.) I apply it to the wall and sole (not frog, coronet, or heel bulb) about every other or third day and get great results. I've also used Farrier's Formula all of that time.

                              He's ridden 4-5 times weekly on good sand indoor or natural grass footing outdoors. Turned out all day on same grass which does have a fair amount of gravel that works up from the base soil. He's never had a lameness problem that was due to his feet. (Just silly horse in pasture antics, pulled muscle type stuff.)

                              He also has one flatter front hoof. I also have an excellent farrier who works very hard to keep him on a strict shoeing interval. Six weeks works great. Six and a half weeks not so good and seven not good at all.

                              Now for the surprise discovery - about a year ago I started giving him spirulina to see if it would help his respiratory & itchy skin allergies. It's helped for that, but what really looks fantastic are his feet. First I thought it was my imagination/wishful thinking, but when the farrier even commented on his last 2 visits that his feet looked better than he'd ever seen, I had to stop and think what changes had been made in my horse's life. The spirulina was really the only one. I'd highly recommend it!!! It's relatively cheap. Started with a higher dose, but now just give about a glucosamine size scoop (teaspoonish) daily as maintanance. Try it. It's not a quick fix. It mayl take 6 to 10 months to really make a believer out of you, but all I can say is WOW. (And that's after knowing that he is already getting top quality nutrition as far as feed and hay too. I keep him at home, so have easy control over all of this.)

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                From my experience with Keratex at a product- the hoof hardener is used as the first application. When the hardener has been used in its entirety- the gel is a maintenance step down from the hardener. I don't believe they are interchangable, however more like a step one, step two process. Just my 2 cents.

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Hmmm...spirolina. Now how would I get THAT into Mr. Picky ?? Worth a try though so thanks for the tip.

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