Kentucky Equine Research discusses what factors into hoof growth and how you can aid your horse’s hooves in growing strong and healthy.
Hoof growth in horses is determined by several factors, including genetics, age, breed, exercise, metabolic rate, illness, temperature, environmental moisture, shoeing and trimming. Building strong hooves can take anywhere from six to twelve months. If a horse has dull and brittle hooves, a reliable way to improve the quality of its hooves would be through balanced nutrition. To achieve this, a total diet reconfiguration may be in order.
When evaluating a feed program, the first factor to take into consideration is whether or not the horse is meeting its energy requirements. If the horse is not meeting its energy requirements, all protein in the diet will be directed to make up for energy needs, which may lead to a secondary protein or amino acid deficiency. In addition to energy, a well-balanced diet in general provides a horse’s nutrient requirements for overall health and will in turn encourage sound hoof growth.
To ensure that hooves are taken care of through diet, consider adding a hoof supplement such as Bio•Bloom™ PS that contains zinc, iodine and methionine, as well as biotin. Keep in mind supplements only affect new hoof growth and will not help hooves that are already in bad shape—feeding healthy new hooves starts from the coronary band.
Bio•Bloom PS is a dual-action supplement designed to maintain and promote healthy hooves from the inside out. It works to improve hooves that may have been damaged by laminitis, sand cracks, seedy toe and wet-dry cycles.