Rocky trails - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 09-14-2020, 08:22 AM Thread Starter
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Rocky trails

Hi, my horse has shoes on his front two hooves and nothing on his back 2 hooves. A friend wants me to go on a Trailride with her where it is quite rocky and I’m wondering how his hooves will handle it. Biggish rocks will repeatedly cause pressure on his frog and the soul of his hooves and I’m wondering if this can cause damage or is painful. I would think boots would be better but I don’t think I can put them on when he has shoes. Thanks Rod
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post #2 of 11 Old 09-14-2020, 09:24 AM
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Most horses do well with front shoes only. Even on rocky trails. As long as you let him pick and choose his way you should be fine for this ride
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post #3 of 11 Old 09-14-2020, 12:49 PM
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Yes you can put boots over shoes, but I doubt you'll need to. I ride over Rocky terrain, I let the horses go slow and pick their way through.
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post #4 of 11 Old 09-14-2020, 01:25 PM
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It depends how toughened up his back hooves are:)

His fronts should be fine with the metal shoes. However, you might consider measuring him for boots on the rear, or getting him shod on the rear.

I have one horse who has hooves like a goat, and has only worn shoes a few time in his life. Those times were when we were going someplace where I was not familiar with the terrain and I knew it would be rocky:)

If your horse is not in superb condition, I would not risk soring him up, if you plan on riding more than 1-2 hours in the rocks, or down a river bed full of rocks:)
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post #5 of 11 Old 09-14-2020, 01:51 PM
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With shoes on fronts he should be fine. Depending on how tough his back feet are. He might or might not do rocky footing.

Have two horses that require different protection hoof wise. Ones shod with pads on fronts or he stone bruises.

Other gelding has just shoes he does fine on rocky trails. Both horses are shod all 4. Back feet wear out get stone bruised being barefoot.

We ride rocky trails daily plus a dirt road that's also rocky. We do let horse pick there way through.
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post #6 of 11 Old 09-14-2020, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much carshon, warebear, walk in the walk and rambo99. This is so helpful and such good advice. Wow. Thanks Rod
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post #7 of 11 Old 09-15-2020, 04:58 PM
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I agree with everyone else. Should be okay since he's shod. You could put buts on (like Cavallos) but should be okay. Have a good ride!

Ride more, worry less.
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post #8 of 11 Old 09-21-2020, 04:02 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Poptartshop. 😀
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post #9 of 11 Old 09-25-2020, 07:30 PM
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If he is conventionally shod with rigid peripheral loading rims only, then he will have restricted feeling to his front feet, so will likely *feel* alright about it, but if the underside of his feet are unprotected, esp if they're weak, then he will be susceptible to stone bruising. Not being shod on hinds means he may feel more discomfort, if his feet aren't strong, but do less damage to them - because he can feel more. So... if I were to ride rocky trails with a (conventionally) shod horse who's feet weren't up to it, I'd want pads or boots.
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post #10 of 11 Old 09-25-2020, 07:36 PM
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I think it depends on the rockyness and how long, my horses are only front shod and I ride on rocky around here for a few hours all the time. I went to VA and rode ROCKY trails... I've never seen anything that rocky and I've ridden all over in South Fork and that's pretty rocky. Well toward the end of that ride, think it was about 5-6 hours my guys backs were a little sore. The people I was riding with had back shoes. When I got home I had the farrier out, I told him where I went and he said yeah if people plan on going there they shod the back. Next time I will definitely, not worth it. Farrier said my guy was okay but he didn't want to mess with them wanted to get more growth.

Just my two cents...
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