It’s Fall ~ Be Safe!

It’s fall and the weather, as we like to to call it, has begun.

Personally I hate the cold weather and prefer it to be hot. But not everyone does, I see posts all over Facebook about how it’s finally riding weather.

I also see a lot of posts about people coming OFF their horses.

It’s easy to forget that horses are really optimally comfortable around 45 degrees. Temperatures above that are likely to slow them down, even just a bit, and of course when you get up into the 80’s and 90’s even fit horses are affected by the heat.

So if you are excited about the cooler weather and are making plans to ride, please..

Wear your helmet. If you plan to school cross country or even go hack baby or green horses around, consider a vest.

Don’t assume your made, older horse is going to be himself. Even the sanest ones can get a little wild this time of year.

Take extra precautions going into fields with horses loose. They tend to be spookier in this weather and much more unpredictable. Don’t get yourself into a dangerous spot.

It’s also hunting season in a lot of places. Be smart. Wear orange and don’t ride where you don’t have permission. Hunters should know you aren’t a deer but it’s too late once you’ve been shot. Also a lot of horses are frightened by gun fire, so be thoughtful about this.

Be aware that other people are going to be doing other activities at this time of year..hiking, biking, ATV sports. You may encounter them when you have not before.

What other safety precautions do you take when the seasons change?

Why Cast A Foot Rather Than Shoe?

These are pictures taken of a hoof that I began working on about 5 months ago. The horse had previously been in shoes, then in glue-on’s and this access crack was going nowhere good.

Many times a crack like this grows out easily, with no further issues. In this case, the horse has feet that look decent from the outside but the solar view reveal thin soles, contracted heels and a nonexistent frog. So it’s not a healthy foot and it’s not going to easily grow out a crack like this.

I was asked to begin casting it when the glue on shoes would not stay on. I trimmed it, did a mild resection and had the owner do a deep cleaning treatment. Further prep involved mildly sanding the outside to remove any debris, and then gluing a cast on.

Casts stop hoof expansion. Without getting into too much detail, sometimes we want this to happen. This hoof was cast three times to get to the point you see in the first (after) photo. The last time I was able to get a layer of Equipack down to increase circulation and the foot grew about an inch between casts.

One more trim and the crack will be completely grown out. We’ll keep working on his other issues but this was a fun example of when casting is the appropriate tool.