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What goes in grows out...

Atty after her first corrective trim

"What goes in, grows out." So that is the FIRST place to start. That would be 'the first focus'. After the needs of the "outside" of the whole horse are addressed then one can work on the hooves. Without seeing the hooves in question I would not venture forth to comment as to, specifically, what needed to be done to them.

The hoof is part of a whole ... so depending on what is noticed about the body, the coat, the diet, and everything else then one can pretty accurately assess what is needed for the particular hooves on that particular horse. Suffice to say that a solid, "balanced" trim, according to the need of EACH, individual hoof needs to take place by a knowledgeable and skilled hoofcare practitioner - One who knows her or his equine hoof anatomy inside-out and can trim according to the anatomy AND the physiology of the individual hoof. I would strongly urge horse owners to learn as much as they can of CORRECT hoof anatomy & physiology as well as what constitutes a 'balanced trim'. Keep in mind that fads come in and go out; specific 'methods' of trimming are touted all over the internet and among different trainers and hoofcare providers. The only TRUE expert on hooves is the horse itself. YOUR HORSE. Study the way your horse moves. Study the way the hooves land and function. Study the muscular structure of your horse. Study so you would be able to spot when your horse is "off". Each horse is unique. Each hoof is unique. Watch hoof dissections on youtube to see what makes up the equine digit. (This is a channel on youtube that I consider to be one of the top educational hoof channels on the web today -

Learn to know your horse's hooves as well as you know the back of your own hand. In order for the best care to be given to your horse there must be a team to work together ... owner, farrier/trimmer and horse. That's the team. If pathological hooves are an issue then adding your veterinarian health care provider into the team is a must. The more owners know about how to keep their horses sound and healthy, the better off the horses will be. Happy New Year everyone! Stay tuned for a great year of educational hoof posts and more! Right here on

Gwenyth Browning Jones Santagate is the best-selling author of 10 Secrets to Healthy Hooves as well as a noted author for various international equine publications including The Horses Hoof, Equine Wellness, Natural Horse Planet as well as a contributing author for the 2001 United States Federal Mounted Border Patrol Training Manual. For the last 37+ years, she has maintained healthy hooves with natural trimming on thousands of horses and specialized in pathological rehabilitation hoofcare for the last 20 years. She and her husband John keep a small herd of their own equine in SW Florida and continue to offer consults for horses in need. You can email to Gwen -- or

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