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Horseshoe Removal 101

Taking off old shoes properly makes the rest of any shoeing job go better

When I was asked to write an article about pulling shoes, I thought it sounded fairly simple. I thought I would hammer it out in a couple of days, throw in a couple of pictures, and there you would have it.

Well, it turns out that there is more to pulling a shoe than I thought. Hopefully this article can make pulling a shoe easier for those that are learning, and easier to teach for those that are helping the up and coming stars of our industry.

Normal Shoe Pulling

My preferred method of pulling a shoe involves leading up a horse, and having my son, Cody, or one of our students pull the shoes while I get to work on another horse. However, I have done my time in the trenches, and have a technique that I like to use and teach for pulling a shoe.

I don’t always cut or rasp off my clinches. If the foot is strong, and the shoeing schedule is being maintained, I have found that you can pull a shoe without causing any damage, and without cutting the clinches. To get away with this, you have to have a really good method for pulling a shoe that consistently allows you to get the shoe off without injuring the foot it is nailed to.

Here, my wife, Kelly, is pulling a shoe using our most common method. Begin by placing the pulloffs behind the heel nail on one side of the shoe and closing…

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Chris gregory

Chris Gregory

Chris Gregory is a Hall of Fame farrier and owner of Heartland Horseshoeing School in Lamar, Mo.

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