Picking Out Hooves!?

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Picking Out Hooves!?

This is a discussion on Picking Out Hooves!? within the Horse Grooming forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • How often should you pick a horse's hooves
  • Hoof picking resting on my leg

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    08-22-2012, 02:57 PM
Exclamation Picking Out Hooves!?

When I try to pick out my horses hooves, he always pulls his leg away. He will let me hold his hoof for about five seconds before yanking it away from my grip. I heard that you should just try to hold on and not let him put it down, but he's just too strong.

There's alot of dirt in his hooves and I just want to clean them out. I got him yesterday morning and today was my first attempt at picking his hooves out.

What should I do? How long can he go without get his hooves cleaned? Any training techiques I can try?

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    08-22-2012, 03:02 PM
I would just keep trying and don't stop until he lets you pick them out. I know when Cheyenne had thrush she did the same thing because her feet were sore. How are you holding the hoof? I had to adjust how I held her hoof so I could yank it back out if she tried to rip it out of my hands.

ETA: If he knows if he keeps ripping his hoof from your hands and you'll eventually stop he will just keep doing it.
    08-22-2012, 03:04 PM
I hold his hoof with my inside hand and grasp his pastern from underneath.
    08-22-2012, 03:06 PM
Green Broke
Use a lead rope to pick it up and hold it until he gets used to it. Look in the training section, there's lots of advice there. I don't tolerate taking a hoof from me no matter what even if it requires a crop or something else. Pulling back can lead to kicking which can kill you. If you still have a hard time maybe a farrier can show you how to work on it.
    08-22-2012, 03:09 PM
You have the most leverage when you hold the hoof near the toe. That way a lot of any movement is taken up by the fetlock. Try to stay loose and move with your horse until he realizes that you're not going to let go.
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    08-22-2012, 03:09 PM
That's how I hold Cheyenne's hoof too. I asked because when I first got her before someone showed me how to properly pick out her feet I only held on to the hoof.
    08-22-2012, 03:13 PM
I'd check for thrush, it can make them very sore and tender to the touch. Does he only yank when you go to pick out the feet? That'd be a sign of pain in the frog area.
    08-22-2012, 03:18 PM
I've only had him for a day and I've only tried to pick out his hooves once. But I will try these techniques as I am going out to the stable to see him in a little while!

Thanks everyone!
    08-22-2012, 09:36 PM
I've had many horses do this. They were usually the horses that weren't always handled often, so they needed to be re-taught patience and respect.

One thing you could try is lifting his foot for a few seconds and putting it back down. The key is to put it back down yourself. Don't let him choose when to. If you were able to hold it up for a few seconds and put it back down, give him lots and lots of pats and praise. He will soon associate lifting his feet with a good reward. Over time (don't expect a major change overnight) he will become more and more accepting of you messing with his hooves and holding them up for a while. If you have to pick each of his feet up several times in order to pick them out (and just get the major stuff if that's all he will hold still for), then take the time to do so.
I hope I could help! C: Good luck.
    08-28-2012, 09:34 PM
Green Broke
Make sure too that you are not trying to come forward when picking it up, as I see people pick up foot and not move back so they don't have as much leverage.

You should be in line with back of leg when you have rear hooves picked up. You pick up, and move to rear of horse, so you have foot held.

And don't V your hand on rear feet. Cup them, so all fingers and your thumb are on same side of leg.

You can V on the fronts, and when pick up, grasp hoof and tip to your knee so it is resting on it almost.
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hoof, hooves, picking out

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