With the plummeting temperatures, snow and ice is an often occurrence, and hoof healthcare is as important as ever! Stilettos have no place at the yard, let alone on your horse, so make sure they aren’t teetering around on these snowball high heels. This uneven walking can cause damage not only to hooves but also to tendons and joints.
A hoof generates heat and this is why snow balls up on the sole. Some people use cooking spray or vaseline to coat a layer onto the underside of the hoof, to help grease the surface so that ice blocks can be easier to remove with a hoof pick.
We do not recommend pouring hot water as the fast expansion in contrast with the freezing temperatures can be uncomfortable- think about how putting cold hands in hot water can feel!
If hooves are overdue a trim, they can pack more snow in, so to avoid snow boots make sure you stay up to date with your farrier appointments. Snow can also pack in if your horse wears horseshoes.
Another option is to buy snow boots or hoof pads which fill in to help prevent the problem.
Take care when walking your horse across flat and smooth surfaces with less traction. Field gateway matts can offer an excellent surface for icy feet, and provide a surface to safely pick out feet. You can shop our range of rubber mats here!