December 3, 2010

Barefoot diet...follow up

Thank you everyone for your helpful comments. The ration balancer that Story mentioned seems like the perfect "grain" solution for Rose. I have decided to try the LMF Super Supplement Formula G and to swap out her alfala pellets for timothy pellets, and I have already cut out the vegetable oil that she was getting.

Rose's front left, showing the "shedding frog",
which all of her feet are currently doing.
I like that the Supper Supplement also provides a good source of copper. I have noticed that her frogs on all four feet completely "shed" several times a year. My farrier is not concerned with it, as most peoples barefoot horses do the same thing around here and he see's it as normal. It also does not seem to make her feet sore at all. However, I can't turn my curious brain off...ever, so I looked into it more. From what I've read it sounds like this "shedding" might actually be due to some sort of low grade thrush that is caused by our nice wet/humid PNW environment we live in. One assumption is that horses lacking in copper tend to have more frog shedding issues. So, hopefully the copper in the LMF will help with that.

As for me thinking this might be some sort of thrush, let me explain that she doesn't have the black stinky thrush that we all immediately think of. Other than the "shedding" frogs the surface of her hoof looks perfectly normal. In terms of her environment, she has a clean paddock that is picked daily (wet on rainy days but not muddy), and a nice big clean dry loafing shed with pellet bedding to hang out in. Regardless of the weather, her feet are always dry and clean when I pull her from the paddock. Her frogs shed at this same time last year, and at that time she was on day turnout and stalled at night, all winter long. So I'm thinking that this copper thing might actually be the case. At any rate we shall see!

Just doing my best to get her hooves in the best barefoot condition possible.

Happy trails and swooshing tails!

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Adventures In Colt Starting


  1. I really have become a huge fan of the ration balancers. I was feeding Purina Enrich 32 but it proved to be too hard to get around here so we recently switched to Triple Crown 30% Supplement and I just couldn't be happier with how my horse looks and feels. Hope you see similar results with your girl!

  2. A great solution for low grade thrush is to spray their hooves with salt water. I put about 1/4 cup of salt in a spray bottle, fill with water, shake well and spray on the bottoms of the hooves, making sure to get in the grooves. I use it purely for maintenance now every time I pick out his hooves. Works great. Also a fabulous barefoot website is It has awesome articles for almost everything you'd want to know. Sometimes it can be too much information and you have to take a break to let it soak in but I love it. :)



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