Over the years, farriers have shared various techniques for applying packing to horses’ feet. While some farriers use a bilge cloth or soufflé cup to apply hoof packing, a Texas farrier not only uses an easy method for applying it, but also for making it.

When making his own packing material, Tommy Boudreau of Mineral Springs, Texas, combines one part Venice turpentine, one part pine tar, one part corona ointment, some copper sulfate crystals and flour as an emulsifier.

To keep the packing on the foot, he uses disposable cotton pads for cleaning faces. The pad, sold in drug stores, fits across the solar surface of a 0-sized foot.

Boudreau nails on the shoe and removes the two clipped nails that held the shoe and pad in alignment. The late Jack Miller, a member of the International Horseshoeing Hall of Fame and one of Boudreau’s mentors, taught him to avoid riveting heels.

“The head of that rivet is at the heel of the foot,” Boudreau says. “As everything wears in, that head can drive into the bar. Using this method, I’ve never had any trouble with that pad moving around.”

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