Most horse owners have noticed that the surfaces of their horses’ hooves are not completely uniform from the coronary band to the ground.

Because new hoof originates at the coronary band and grows downward, the top part of the hoof often looks smoother and shinier than the older horn toward the sole. Environmental factors like muddy footing, wet and dry weather cycles, and normal wear and tear will cause the hoof surface to lose some of its luster and develop some degree of flaking or shallow cracking. This change is normal and does not signify a problem.

Seasonal changes in hoof growth can often be seen as minor lines or ridges on the hoof wall. Hooves tend to grow a little faster during warm weather and somewhat more slowly during the winter months. A change in work might also affect hoof growth. These variations can be seen, but not felt as a definite bulge or depression. They are also normal and should not be a cause for concern.

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