Just this week I’ve been following a thread on COTH called Best practices: When your horse throws a shoe. In it, the poster asks how other riders deal with the naked foot until the farrier can come and tack the shoe back on.
Much to my surprise, several people said they would pull the shoe on the opposite foot so that the pair would be even. Their rationale is that the difference in height caused when a hoof is shoeless can cause muscle soreness.
Now when my horse loses a shoe — which he did on Monday — I do my best to keep the hoof from chipping or breaking. I generally put some sole pack on the sole (in case of bruising), put an Easyboot on the hoof, and go on as normal. Generally my farrier can come out in a day or two, but I even ride when my horse is wearing a boot. It’s important to note that different styles of hoof boots fit different shaped hoofs. It’s a good idea to figure out what type of boot works for your horse before it’s an emergency.
I know people who create an elaborate casing made of diapers and duct tape who then keep their horses in their stalls. I’ve tried this technique but it came off in such a pitifully short period of time that I’ve since given up. My horse doesn’t like being in a stall so is better off in a hoof boot.
I know people who just don’t ride their horse but do nothing to the bare hoof (those people have horses with much better feet than mine have!).
I know how to remove a shoe that’s twisted or which has partially come off (which will be covered in a later post). But I’ve never come across anyone who pulls the other shoe off. I mentioned this to my farrier when she arrived on Tuesday and she gave me one of those, “don’t try this at home” looks and told me to keep on using the Easyboot.
Bandaging a Hoof – This is a useful photo essay that takes you through the steps of bandaging a hoof. The photo of the girl in the red shirt above is taken from this series.
This video from the website Barnmice is also helpful.