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Terribly Brittle ,Thin and Crumbling Hoof Wall

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  • Terribly Brittle ,Thin and Crumbling Hoof Wall

    my ottb's feet were in bad shape when i got him 2 years ago.regular and very frequent farrier care, selected feeding and supplements like ground flax seed,rice bran,kelp,farrier's formula,the use of hoof boots instead of shoes and lots of in between rasping,3 of his feet have improved tremendously.but his left front just won't .the other day a piece broke off at the toe and when the farrier rasped it smooth,we saw the dreaded "fault lines" (for lack of better word) again and the crumbling hoof wall underneath.this was his problem foot from the start,ever so slightly club foot shaped.it would improve and we'd think "yes,finally" and then it would chip off again .it seems we just can't get ahead and after 2 years of trying ,i'm at the end of the rope.
    any help / advice / suggestions or sharing of your experiences would be greatly appreciated !

  • #2
    Trace minerals seem to be very important to horse hoof health. I used to think biotin was the chief player in hoof quality, but not so much any longer. The hoof supplement Foundation makes a great (and fast) improvement in my WB's poor-quality hooves. It's not terribly expensive as hoof supplements go, but you have to buy it from a veterinarian. http://www.vetriscience.com/index.ph...il&p=900570420 I pay about $42 for 2.5# bucket, and for maintenance, my two 1200# horses get one scoop daily.

    My WB also has a club foot on his right fore. The only thing that keeps that hoof from splitting at the toe is setting the heels down so that he isn't landing toe first. I rasp at least once inbetween farrier visits.

    What brand of boots are you using? WB demolished his early this month.


    • Original Poster

      thanks for your input.will see and compare your hoof supplement with mine,you are right it is not just the biotine,other components play a big role as well.my vet had recommended the farrier formula but not everything works for everybody.
      you're also right in suggesting keeping the heels donw on the club foot shaped hoof.my farrier had shown me how to do it in between his visits.so you and i are in sync
      i use the easyboot glove as i do a lot of arena riding and the gaiters keep the sand from coming into the boot.they also help it to stay on although on a few "gallopping escapades" my horse managed to throw them off.


      • #4
        Try using Keratex Hoof Hardener and see if that helps. Often, in my area, when feet crumble like that, it's just too soft from being in the wet grass and absorbing too much moisture. The Keratex will help seal it as well as harden the walls.

        I also use Durasole on the bottom and pour it down into the cracks to keep white line from setting in. Seems to work pretty well for me. Also do not let the hooves get long. If your farrier can't come often or you can't manage it for some reason, get some simple lessons from him/her on how to keep the hoof back and beveled.


        • #5
          I have a horse in my barn that up until a year ago, had to be shod on all fours or he would chip and crumble as you described. I dealt with this problem for all of his adult life. Then, I changed feeds due to quality problems and dead insects found in the feed I was using. The feed I switched to was Tribute feeds. What a tremendous difference in hoof quality it made. I had the opportunity to discuss it with them and was told that it's not the biotin that makes the difference, it's the
          Methionine. I'm no expert, but I love what it did for his feet.
          Here is a link to the ingredients- I hope this helps you.


          • #6
            My horse had crappy crumbly feet that did improve with better nutrition but apparently he had a sub-clinical case of white line disease for a long time. It finally blew up two years ago with all the rich grass. I treated him all around with a CleanTrax soak and was and still am very happy with the results. No more crumbly feet, even under the worst conditions.
            "Some people are born on third base and go through life thinking they hit a triple” – Barry Switzer


            • #7
              Sounds like a possible case of white line to me too. When's the last time the farrier had a look?


              • Original Poster

                i doubt it,my farrier would have detected it .he's been doing this horse since i got him 2 years ago ,and he was here just the day i posted this.


                • #9
                  Sounds like a possible case of white line to me too. When's the last time the farrier had a look?


                  • #10


                    • #11
                      Crossapol worked wonders on Cloudy's hooves for about 3 yrs. Then I quit it since he acquired a mare of his own, and I assumed her boarding bills, etc. For 2 more years his hooves were great, until this summer. With all the rain, I've now bought a case of crossapol and resolved to use it forever.

                      Life Data Lab's hoof disinfectant used t o work on his hooves as well years ago when we boarded in muddy area.

                      Keratex did nothing for either Cloudy or Callie.

                      It all depends on the horse, the hoof, and the environment. Crossapol and Life Data Lab's Hoof Disinfectant (a misnomer since it hardened soles and walls) both worked on hoof walls and soles.

                      You do want to check for white line. It does make the hooves crumble. Cloudy had that in one hoof 5 1/2 yrs ago. Partial resection and lots of medication, then we started the crossapol.


                      • #12
                        If all the other feet are doing awesome, and it's just the clubby foot that isn't doing well, maybe it's the actual structure of that foot that is causing the issue, not the quality of the hoof itself?

                        Maybe ask your farrier about shoeing just the clubby foot? My mum used to own an Arab mare with one clubby foot... she wore a shoe just on that foot because it grew oddly and chipped all the toe off when barefoot.
                        Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!


                        • #13
                          I'm just throwing this out because it worked for me. I bought a 16yo OTTB who had crappy feet and had always had crappy feet with his former owner. Now I will admit at the outset that my pastures are sandy loam and the pastures with the former owner were clay, and I'm sure that the change in soils made a difference.

                          But I got so concerned about his mushy feet that I hauled him to the best farrier I could find within a hundred miles. This guy was a certified master farrier and had been president of the AFA, so I figured he was respected by other farriers. He recommended that I start D on NuHoof Maximizer which has quite a few good things in it. I did, and within four months, the mushy feet went away, never to return. IIRC, the base of NuHoof Maximizer is soy crumbles. This was more than ten years ago, so there might be better products out there now and it's possible that Select has changed the formula, but if I had a horse with hoof problems NuHoof is definitely where I would start.
                          Last edited by vineyridge; Jul. 31, 2013, 06:14 PM.
                          "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                          Thread killer Extraordinaire


                          • Original Poster

                            i have been writing down all the posters supplements suggestions and will look into respective ingredients and compare to farrier's formula which i am using.thank you all who have contributed yours.

                            and sublimeequine,we've been wondering the same thing now,is the structure of clubby foot making issue worse,maybe eveb creating it.


                            • #15
                              I have a TB with thin walls that started crumbling when he moved down to the Gulf Coast. Started him on the keratex hoof hardener, I think I've done maybe 3 weeks of treatment and already see a major difference. Love it and recommend it to anyone.


                              • #16
                                I also have had great results with Keratex hoof hardener on my ottb that used to have very crumbly walls. Make sure to apply on dry hooves! I also keep a trace mineral block in his feed tub all the time now. He eats around it and licks it occasionally. I think that has helped him in many ways.
                                "I am still under the impression there is nothing alive quite so beautiful
                                as a thoroughbred horse."

                                -JOHN GALSWORTHY


                                • Original Poster

                                  amazing info so far,am writing down all of your suggestions ! many thanks !


                                  • #18
                                    I came across this article a little while ago and thought it made some good points:

                                    Since you're dealing with a chronic case that, despite your best efforts, is not resolving, maybe it would be worth speaking with your farrier about this? The risk for doing the treatment seems low and it might fix some of the issues you are dealing with. Just saying it might be worth a try...


                                    • #19
                                      Another vote for Keratex.

                                      A bottle is roughly $50. Mine lasts almost a year.


                                      • #20
                                        I'm a recent convert to Keratex. My guy kept cracking and chipping even though he's been on Smart Hoof for almost a year. The new hoof growing in looks great. The older hoof growth has been the problem. He's also had 3 abscesses in the same hoof in the past year, each time brought on by really wet conditions that exacerbated the chipping and cracking. I started using Keratex about 3 weeks ago. Between that and rasping between trims, I'm seeing a huge difference.
                                        My May boys: Beau, Neon, Criss