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Wizard: To Shoe or Not To Shoe… That is the Question

February 3, 2009


My friend Sarah rode Wizard Tuesday night while I stayed home watching TV with my husband ;^) Sarah said that Wizard was very well-behaved but felt a little uncomfortable. He was not fond of her saddle, either. The weather is getting cold again and I’m wondering if his soles are too thin for riding in the cold weather. He moved out beautifully on Monday night so the change in weather leads me to think his soles are a little tender. I’m going to keep watching him carefully and I’m planning to devise a way to get the Venice Turpentine on his feet without getting it all over me. He seems fine in the warmer weather because the ground is not so firm. I don’t mind shoeing him but I really liked the idea of keeping him barefoot if possible. If it’s just a cold weather thing, I can work around it, but if it’s making him uncomfortable, I’ll have to take action.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. WendyU permalink
    February 4, 2009 11:40 am

    I sympathize with your situation. I’ve been using 7% iodine solution on my horse’s soles and it’s helped. He has very tender feet but getting better with supplements (Biotin 100 and the iodine. I wasn’t able to have him barefoot last winter and he is this winter (with some minor tenderfootedness) so progress is being made. Just much slower than I’d like…

  2. February 4, 2009 12:29 pm

    Thanks so much for sharing your experience. It’s a tough call since I see him going really nicely in the warm weather and it’s just these cold snaps that seem to make him a little tenderfooted. On the other hand, a sore sole is never a good thing and the last thing he needs is a bruise. He’s been barefoot for a few years while he was not ridden so I’m hoping to try a few more things before I give in and put shoes on him.

    Does the iodine help keep the foot clean or does it toughen the sole?

  3. dangerouspenguin permalink
    February 4, 2009 1:02 pm

    There’s always boots. I would try that first to see if they alleviate the soreness before moving right into shoes.

    For products I would consider TUF-FOOT. I don’t use anything topical on my horses, but I do use this product with my dog Willow. She is very thin-skinned and her paw pads cut easily on sharp rock. I started using this stuff once a month several years ago and she hardly ever gets cuts now. It is one of the most impressive products that I have used, working exactly as advertised. I think there are some testimonials from horse owners on the website.

    Good luck!

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