It's National Hoof Care Week! (5 Hoof Care Tips)

National Hoof Care Week is celebrated annually, Tuesday through Friday during the third week of January. This year, it takes place from January 17th through the 20th. These days are dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of hoof care for horses and other hoofed animals like cows and pigs. Without proper hoof care, these animals can suffer various problems including soreness, infections, and lameness that can affect an animal’s general health and performance.

 

To avoid hoof-related problems, consider the following tips for National Hoof Care Week.

5 Hoof Care Tips for Horses and Livestock

1. Trim Regularly

Most horses, pigs, and cows benefit from routine hoof trimming that’s scheduled about twice a year. Some animals might require more frequent trims, depending on their activity level and the type of terrain on which they spend the most time. Regular trims ensure that the animals’ hooves are kept a healthy length and well-balanced. Leaving them untrimmed can result in injury, infection, and musculoskeletal problems that affect an animal’s mobility.

2. Clean the Hooves

This is especially important for horses. Before turning out your horse or going for a ride, you should be inspecting their hooves and removing any rocks or other debris that has become lodged in the hooves. This can help to prevent injury and infection while improving balance and prolonging the life of your horse’s shoes.

3. Avoid Mud

Mud can be dangerous and problematic for hooved animals (even though pigs stereotypically love it). It can become stuck and gum up animals’ hooves. Additionally, it presents balance issues that can lead to injury. Mud also increases the wet-dry cycles that animal hooves undergo.

4. Minimize Wet-to-Dry Cycles

The term “wet-to-dry cycle” refers to the process of wetting and then drying an animal’s hooves. Repeated cycles can cause problems with shoes and hoof cracking. Minimize your animals’ bathing and the time they spend in the rain during the rainy season.

5. Maintain Proper Nutrition

A balanced diet including all of the essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients your animals need can help them produce healthy hooves.

Equine and Livestock Hoof Care With Adobe Veterinary Center

At Adobe Veterinary Center, we have both livestock and equine veterinarians available to provide specialized care to help you maintain the health of your animals while improving performance and helping you improve the health of your farm. We offer comprehensive veterinary care, including hoof-related examinations, maintenance, and treatment recommendations. To learn more about caring for the hooves of your horses, cows, or pigs, we welcome you to contact our office to schedule an appointment in Tucson today.

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