Winter comes with challenges when talking about the horse’s hooves. Of course, the optimum hoof care depends on a lot of factors, from geographic location to the type of surface arena or the condition of his hooves. Each horse is unique and so is his situation.

You need to take care of your horse, especially in wintertime when it is snowing and the ice gets formed easier. If you do not take appropriate care for your horse’s hooves, injuries and pains can easily appear.

Here are some warnings that will help you improve the winter care for your horse and his hooves.

Slow Hooves’ Growth

It is important to know that your horse’s hooves grow slower during winter than during spring. The growth of his hooves is influenced by the horse’s overall health state, the environment and, of course, the amount of exercise he is going to do.

Winter comes with low temperatures and a decrease in your horse’s activity will be observed. This means that it will be less blood circulation in their hooves, thing that will contribute to slow growth. They will spend more time indoors, eating hay.

They will burn calories not by exercising, but by keeping warm. In autumn his food will have fewer nutrients and this will contribute to slower growth of his hooves. It is important to note that in spring the hooves’ growth is accelerated.


A side effect of winter is that when it is snowing, there are snowballs that form. This means that the snow gets compacted and gets deposited on your horse’s hooves. In the end, your horse will walk on balls of snow, which can cause a huge discomfort for him.

If you do not remove the balls of snow, a huge strain on tendons and ligaments will appear, which can lead to further health complications.

Most horse owners have the shoes of their horses removed during winter to prevent the formation of snowballs. However, if you want your horse to exercise during winter, you can have some anti-balling pads applied to the shoes. Another solution would be to apply bubble pads to your horse’s shoes.

They are full of air and will pop out the snow from the shoe. Like this, the formation of snowballs will be prevented.

Whatever solution you will choose for your horse’s shoes, take into consideration that you need to check them frequently. You need to be sure that they are in the best condition and have not loosened or ripped.


Bruises can appear during wintertime in the form of darker areas. However, most bruises are not visible and periodic hoof checks are needed. Protective pads can help you protect your horse’s shoes during winter times. Keep in mind that you should not force your horse to walk on the frozen ground if he does not want to.


The tricky thing with winter is that there are times when the weather is dry, and there are times when the weather is wet. This alternation of dry and wet weather can cause the hoof wall to expand.

This means that bacteria will have an easier time inside, having the perfect environment to multiply and develop, things that can cause the appearance of abscesses.

Usually, the abscesses are very painful and the solution is to call your vet to help you drain the abscesses.


During winter when the weather is rather wet than freezing cold, thrush can easily form. When the temperatures drop sub-zero degrees, the formation of bacteria and fungi within the hoof is facilitated.

However, when the temperatures encourage the ground to be moist, fungal problems can easily appear. You can make the problem go away by using special products designed for this problem. Be sure to keep your horse’s hooves as dry as possible.

White Line Disease

White line disease is a fungus that attacks the white line, the connection between the horse’s hoof wall and sole. Wet weather conditions contribute to the development of bacteria and fungi which can seriously affect the hoof health of your horse. You will notice that the white line becomes gray or has a darker color, and can also have a foul smell.

You need to take care of your horse’s hooves especially during wet and humid winters. These weather conditions facilitate the development of soil bacteria which can easily infiltrate into your horse’s hoof. You can apply specific treatment or you can call your vet to get the hoof wall cut.

Soft Hoof Walls

When the weather is humid and moist, it causes the wall of the hooves to become softer. This can lead to other health problems that can affect your horse’s overall health. If the wall of the hoof is softer than usual, they make way for bacteria and fungi to infiltrate.

Besides, the weight of the horse is distributed to other parts of the hoof. This means that the strength of your horse will decrease and his wellbeing and overall health will begin to damage.


With all these climate changes, the typical winter conditions have changed. When the weather is more humid and moist, it facilitates the development of different bacteria and fungi, says John Jackson equine vet in a personal statement writing service.

However, all these diseases can be prevented or stopped from developing if you conduct periodical hooves checks. When the weather is snowy, there are snowballs that form and can cause great pain and discomfort for your horse. You need to be extra careful during wintertime and keep your horse’s hooves as dry as possible.

Author Bio:

James Murphy is an editor at dissertation writing services. He is fond of traveling and in his free time, he likes to write sports articles and to spend time with his family. His biggest passion is to share his knowledge with youngsters.



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