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Don Tritz places a horse on a Hoof Doc, the system he invented for blow drying wet hooves. The Hood Doc uses the exhaust from a grooming vacuum cleaner to dry feet.
When Don Tritz, a farrier from Genoa City, Wis., got tired of dealing with wet hooves a few years ago, he started looking around the barns he was shoeing at to see if there was anything that might help him out.
“The most important thing is to maintain proper hoof moisture,” he says. “But there are times of the year around here when the feet are just mush.”
Tritz noticed that electric vacuums were becoming common in many of the boarding barns, where they were used to help with grooming horses. He noticed the vacuums also had an exhaust function that some horse owners used as a type of blow dryer to dry and arrange manes.
“Now,” he thought, “if I could just figure out a way to use that on feet.”
It took him to a while to come up with the way, but eventually, he came up with the Hoof Doc — a sturdy plastic mat that is connected by a flexible hose to the exhaust of a vacuum, The mat has a grid of circular holes on the top, through which the hot air is directed across the feet of a horse who is standing on it.
Tritz started working on the idea about 5 years ago and has been marketing…