To shoe or not to shoe? - Page 2

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To shoe or not to shoe?

This is a discussion on To shoe or not to shoe? within the Hoof Care forums, part of the Horse Health category
  • Negatives of borium horseshoes

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    01-04-2013, 08:38 PM
Truthfully, unless the horse is having tenderness issues, I wouldn't worry about shoes. Doing a lot of riding on pavement, I would stay away from shoeing if at all possible because there are so many options...and the cons generally outweigh the pros with most of them. Those plastic and rubber horseshoes that are so popular look really cool...but you can't shape them to fit the horse's hoof without compromising the integrity of the shoe itself. So, you're just having to slap them on there and rasp the horse's hoof to fit...which is a bad deal all the way around.

And, if you wanted to go with regular shoes, you'd have to apply borium or some other "gripping agent" to stop the slipping...but borium doesn't provide any sort of leeway in the movement department. When their feet hit the ground, they stick hard, which is very hard on joints, muscles, and tendons. I've seen more horses with blown knees/hocks and bowed tendons because of borium tipped shoes than anything else.

My very best suggestion? Get a good pair of hoof boots that fit your horse. That way, you can go barefoot, but still have a good slip-resistant option handy if he starts to seem ouchy.
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    01-04-2013, 08:48 PM
Also these work very very well and any farrier can apply them with his normal tools. They are better than the rubber covered steel as they wont wear through and get like ice skates when the rubber is worn away.

    01-05-2013, 12:47 AM
You asked if it would just be throwing your money away. Well, in the long run I think getting the appropriate hoof boots would be saving you a lot of money as well as benefit your horse. You will only use the hoof boots when you ride, and a good pair will not wear out that quickly. I use front boots over really rocky terrain. Although I am sure my mare could traverse the rocks just fine w/o them I prefer to know there is "shock absorbtion" between her hooves and a non-yielding surface (rocks). She has not yet slipped on rocky areas where most people (as in people on foot) would have extreme difficulty doing the same, and those I ride w have shod horses - they have all slipped. I would say the right hoof boot would prevent slipping above any other option...and cost less in the long run.
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    01-08-2013, 01:33 PM
What does your farrier recommend for your horse?

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