A Handy “How-To” For Hoof Health

Though co-written by three extremely knowledgeable experts in equine podiatry, it is the full-color photography on nearly every page of this book that immediately grabs the reader.

Foremost among these photos are the shots depicting various hoof disorders and diseases. Each of these is accompanied by an explanation of the ailment, and often its possible causes and potential ramifications. Some of the photos also are paired with line sketches that further illustrate the nature of the problem, such as long-toe, underrun heel or the flawed symmetry of flared hoof walls.

The hoof problems are broken into categories including abnormal conformation, vascular defects, structural wall defects, infections and laminitis.

The collective resu  lt is a reference work that could be quite useful to farriers in diagnosing hoof problems or explaining those problems to horse owners.

From The Beginning

But it would be a mistake to focus solely on the book’s handling of hoof diseases and disorders, which appear in the last chapter. Actually, the authors’ true aim is to help readers avoid those very problems. The first chapter offers a brief, general foundation of care to be followed by horse owners, farriers, nutritionists and veterinarians. Subsequent chapters move into much greater detail on the anatomy, growth and nutrition of hooves.

It is in Chapter 2, “Anatomy,” that Building the Equine Foot first uses photography to great effect. The photos and adjoining bullet-point descriptions give readers a guided tour of the architecture of the equine foot.

There are lateral views and solar…

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