Cracking, Chipping, Weak White Hooves
   

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Cracking, Chipping, Weak White Hooves

This is a discussion on Cracking, Chipping, Weak White Hooves within the Hoof Care forums, part of the Horse Health category
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    05-20-2013, 08:42 PM
  #1
Foal
Cracking, Chipping, Weak White Hooves

So, my mare has some weak hooves! When I purchased her last summer, she had a little crack that gradually got bigger. The farrier suggested Rainmaker, so I used that for a while and that combined with the farrier's work took care of the crack.

Now, she has a light case of thrush, so I am washing her hooves out with Dawn every night, making sure they are dry, and then putting her back in a clean stall. Her stall is being cleaned twice a day.

She has a chip in her right fore hoof now! I feel like I need to do something about it. I talked with my trainer/BM, and she suggested a supplement with biotin in it. However, she could not recommend one to me as she hasn't had any horses with this problem before. Some of it may have to do with Grace's hooves being mostly white.

Grace is fed good hay, a beet pulp/soybean meal mash in the morning, a little grain twice a day, and pasture several hours a day when it's not too wet outside. She also gets turned out in an indoor with really nice footing: a sand/shredded tire/dirt mixture. I work/ride her in said arena no more than four days a week, though we are slowly transitioning toward more. Oh, she is barefoot: never had shoes. And she's 5. I can try to get pictures tomorrow night if that would help.

Anyway, is there anyone else who has had a similar problem? What supplement do you suggest I try, and is there a conditioner of some kind that would help as well?

Thank you!
     
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    05-20-2013, 09:35 PM
  #2
Started
Stay away from hoof conditioners. Research shows they don't help, and can actually cause damage by weakening the hoof wall.

There is no difference between white and black feet, except pigment. You can just see things on a white foot you can't see on a black one.

As far as supplements, look for one that provides methionine, zinc, biotin, and fatty acids. It will take a long time of feeding a supplement to see the results, but it is highly worth it.
     
    05-20-2013, 10:44 PM
  #3
Foal
Are SmartHoof Pellets a good option?

Thank you very much for your help :)
     
    05-20-2013, 10:46 PM
  #4
Started
That looks like an excellent option! And you're welcome. I've received a lot of help here, so I always pay it forward when I can.
     
    05-20-2013, 10:49 PM
  #5
Foal
Great! I will order some right away and hopefully we see improvement in the next few months :) Thankfully, the weak hooves are her only fault ;)
     
    05-20-2013, 11:21 PM
  #6
Started
If that's her only fault, you've got a good one!
     
    05-21-2013, 12:37 AM
  #7
Trained
Hi, If you would like specific opinions on your horse's hooves, hoof pics are a good idea. Chipping & cracks generally come about from insufficient/improper hoof care. Check out link in signature below for tips.

Agree with all Affored has said. There is no strength inherant to pigment, so it's nothing to do with white hooves. Good diet & nutrition is a big factor in hoof health. As is environment & lifestyle & I would be stalling her as little as possible and motivating as much exercise, particularly on firm/dry ground as possible too.

Re which supplement, sounds like the SmartPak ones are very good, and there are other good general ones, but it is important that her nutrition is well balanced. Therefore it's a good idea to do at least a basic diet analysis, to work out what exactly she's getting, so what she specifically needs. FeedXL.com is a great resource for that sort of thing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Jane    
Grace is fed good hay, a beet pulp/soybean meal mash in the morning, a little grain twice a day,
Horses are built to be 'trickle feeders' of low grade roughage & feeding them in this manner is best for their health. Any hard feeds should be fed over at least 2-3 meals daily & in small quantities. This is especially important with starchy &/or oily feeds, which are not easy for the horse to digest. So assuming you want to keep her diet the same, I'd be mixing the grain, beet pulp & soy meal together into at least 3 small meals daily &/or cutting out the grain, in favour of a more digestible, less problematic choice. I'm guessing she needs weight, being fed these things? You will also find she gets more out of - so puts more condition on - when fed more small meals daily too.
     
    05-21-2013, 09:39 AM
  #8
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie    
Horses are built to be 'trickle feeders' of low grade roughage & feeding them in this manner is best for their health. Any hard feeds should be fed over at least 2-3 meals daily & in small quantities. This is especially important with starchy &/or oily feeds, which are not easy for the horse to digest. So assuming you want to keep her diet the same, I'd be mixing the grain, beet pulp & soy meal together into at least 3 small meals daily &/or cutting out the grain, in favour of a more digestible, less problematic choice. I'm guessing she needs weight, being fed these things? You will also find she gets more out of - so puts more condition on - when fed more small meals daily too.
I'm a little confused as to why you mention this, since we're already doing the two meals a day. If she were getting more oats and mash, then it would be split into three meals (two of the horses at the barn are fed that way) but she really isn't getting all that much. We're not working her hard enough for that yet.

I can try to get pictures tonight.

Aforred: Thank you, she is quite a sweetheart :) (but I was exaggerating just a little bit)
     
    05-23-2013, 01:12 AM
  #9
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Jane    
I'm a little confused as to why you mention this, since we're already doing the two meals a day. If she were getting more oats and mash, then it would be split into three meals
Because horses are built for little & often & you said you're only feeding the beet pulp once daily & the grain twice daily. Of course, you haven't told how much or what grain, etc, so if they're very small amounts for eg. May be OK.
     
    05-23-2013, 08:43 AM
  #10
Foal
They are small. I keep forgetting to look and see how big our "scoop" is out at the barn, but she gets a scant 1/4 scoop of oats 2x a day, and a scant 1/2 scoop of already-hydrated mash. But that's probably not very helpful, because I don't know how big the scoop is!
     

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