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         Picking Up A Horses Hoof


The idea of picking up a horse's hooves can intimidate some owners since a well-placed horse kick would really hurt! Such caution is good, but in reality if you pick up a horse's hoof properly you provide him with no leverage or ability to kick you. This is a situation where a person's worst fears can cause him to imagine an incident that is highly unlikely to occur with careful handling.

Here's how to safely pick up a horse's hoof:

Starting with the front hoof, approach your horse diagonally from his front so that he clearly knows you are there - you don't want to surprise him. Place yourself even with his shoulder and make sure to face his rear; you will both be facing opposite directions during the hoof picking process.

Making sure that your feet aren't too close to the horse's hoof, start running the hand parallel to him down his shoulder and along the length of his leg, finally stopping just above his ankle. Gently grasp the ankle portion and click (or otherwise verbally cue him) to ask him to raise his leg. If he's well trained, that small cue will be more than enough and he'll do just what you requested. You're now free to begin picking his hoof.

If your horse is being a bit stubborn or hasn't learned how to pick up his legs yet try leaning into his shoulder as you run your hand down the back of his cannon bone. You can also gently squeeze/pinch the tendons to further cue him to what you would like. As you perform these physical cues make sure you provide a verbal one also (I make a clicking sound) so the horse later associates your sound with the requested response. Increase the weight you push against his shoulder until he finally lifts his leg as requested.

When picking a horse's hoof you want to remove all debris from the hoof clefts as well as the rim and frog. Be careful around the frog because it can sometimes be a bit sensitive, particularly if the horse has thrush.

Once you have finished cleaning the front hoof carefully guide it back to the floor; you don't want to allow the horse to slam it, potentially hitting your foot in the process. Praise your horse and pat him on the front shoulder a bit so he understands that you are pleased with his cooperation, then run your hand along his back to his rear leg. Place yourself in the same position as you did with his front leg and do the process over again.

There is a slight difference between lifting a rear foot and front foot, even though your basic positioning and actions are nearly identical. When you lift your horse's rear foot he will probably give a little jerk that you might misinterpret as a kick. This is a common reflex reaction among horses and nothing for you to worry about.

Secondly, when you raise your horse's rear leg you'll want to step into him a bit so that your hip is underneath his leg. Rest his leg on your thigh, grab his hoof and gently flex it upwards. By doing this you lend him some support and more importantly the position of his leg and his flexed hoof will prevent him from being able to kick you.

Clean the hoof, lower it cautiously as you did the first and praise him. Congratulations - you're halfway done! The opposite side will be done exactly the same way, but try to return to his front and start the opposite side rather than move around his rear. It's bad practice to approach or circle all but the most trusted horses via the rear in such close quarters since a horse would be within range to strike.

When lifting any hoof try to make sure your horse is properly squared (balanced evenly on all four legs) so that when you lift one hoof he can easily balance on his remaining three. At no time should the horse actually lean his weight on you! Even when you rest his rear leg on your thigh you're not allowing him to use you as a crutch.

Once you have picked your horse's hooves a few times it will probably become very simple and take less than 5 minutes to clear all hooves. Most trained horses will raise their hoof for you the moment they feel your leg run down their leg.

It is a very good idea to control your horse's head while you are picking his hooves. This can be done by attaching his halter to crossties or asking a partner hold your horse's head. By controlling his head you ensure your horse can't move away from you while you're trying to pick his hooves, or worse? turn around and take a bite at your rear!

Jeffrey Rolo, owner of Alpha Horse and an experienced horse trainer and breeder, is the author of the above article.  You will find many other informational articles dealing with horse training and care as well as games and other horse fun on his website:  http://www.alphahorse.com.


TODAYS NEWS BY OFFICEJAX FREE ADVERTISING AND AD EXCHANGE SOLUTIONSMORE PETS INFORMATION RESOURCES updated Tue. May / 11 / 2021

Pet of the Week: Hailey - Tysons Reporter
Pet of the Week: Hailey  Tysons Reporter

Pets adopted during the pandemic are being returned in record numbers - New York Post
Pets adopted during the pandemic are being returned in record numbers  New York Post

Pets of the week - Chicago Tribune
Pets of the week  Chicago Tribune

PACC needs help making room for incoming pets - Tucson Weekly
PACC needs help making room for incoming pets  Tucson Weekly

Understanding animal heat exhaustion for safe outings with your pets - WDVM 25
Understanding animal heat exhaustion for safe outings with your pets  WDVM 25

How to prepare your pets for hurricane season - WTSP.com
How to prepare your pets for hurricane season  WTSP.com

Houstonians returning pets they adopted during Covid lockdown - Houston Chronicle
Houstonians returning pets they adopted during Covid lockdown  Houston Chronicle

See The Latest Adoptable Pets In The Washington DC Area - Washington, DC Patch
See The Latest Adoptable Pets In The Washington DC Area  Washington, DC Patch

People Are Returning Their Pandemic Pets at Alarming Rates - Fatherly
People Are Returning Their Pandemic Pets at Alarming Rates  Fatherly

People Are Surrendering Their “Pandemic Pets” — Here's How to Rehome a Dog - Green Matters
People Are Surrendering Their “Pandemic Pets” — Here's How to Rehome a Dog  Green Matters

Pets adopted during the pandemic are being returned at record numbers: report - FOX 13 Tampa Bay
Pets adopted during the pandemic are being returned at record numbers: report  FOX 13 Tampa Bay

Defying predictions and anecdotes, Midstate and national pandemic pet shelter surrenders are down, not up - ABC27
Defying predictions and anecdotes, Midstate and national pandemic pet shelter surrenders are down, not up  ABC27

Meet Baxter, Penny, and Lady Delacroix, this week’s Pets of the Week in the San Gabriel Valley/Whittier - The San Gabriel Valley Tribune
Meet Baxter, Penny, and Lady Delacroix, this week’s Pets of the Week in the San Gabriel Valley/Whittier  The San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Livonia council approves leash law, shoots down weather guidelines for pet owners - Hometown Life
Livonia council approves leash law, shoots down weather guidelines for pet owners  Hometown Life

Experts share how to protect pets during peak tick season - WABI
Experts share how to protect pets during peak tick season  WABI

Phoenix woman faces multiple charges after malnourished dog and other pets rescued - ABC15 Arizona
Phoenix woman faces multiple charges after malnourished dog and other pets rescued  ABC15 Arizona

As more people return to work, more pets returned to shelters — but not in Chicago - WGN TV Chicago
As more people return to work, more pets returned to shelters — but not in Chicago  WGN TV Chicago

Helping pets through separation anxiety WCVB Boston - WCVB Boston
Helping pets through separation anxiety WCVB Boston  WCVB Boston

Best alien creatures in Mass Effect that can be pets - Windows Central
Best alien creatures in Mass Effect that can be pets  Windows Central

Commissaries offer savings for pet food, supplies in May - Dayton Daily News
Commissaries offer savings for pet food, supplies in May  Dayton Daily News

Low-cost rabies vaccine clinic for pets happening on James Island - WCBD News 2
Low-cost rabies vaccine clinic for pets happening on James Island  WCBD News 2

Furever Friends: Pets available for adoption - WJAC Johnstown
Furever Friends: Pets available for adoption  WJAC Johnstown

Pet Owners and Their Dogs Love Meilimiyu's Cooling Pet Blanket | PEOPLE.com - PEOPLE
Pet Owners and Their Dogs Love Meilimiyu's Cooling Pet Blanket | PEOPLE.com  PEOPLE

Family pets perish in SE Topeka house fire - WIBW
Family pets perish in SE Topeka house fire  WIBW

Talking About Pets | Kitten season is upon us - Daytona Beach News-Journal
Talking About Pets | Kitten season is upon us  Daytona Beach News-Journal

Pet Releaf® Focuses on Veterinarians with the Launch of Sentesa™ for Dogs - The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel
Pet Releaf® Focuses on Veterinarians with the Launch of Sentesa™ for Dogs  The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel

Texas ChainPaw Is Adoption for Horror Film Lookalike Pets - Nerdist
Texas ChainPaw Is Adoption for Horror Film Lookalike Pets  Nerdist

Pet Insurance Industry Breeds Record Growth; NAIC Grooms Model Act Discussion - JD Supra
Pet Insurance Industry Breeds Record Growth; NAIC Grooms Model Act Discussion  JD Supra

Eddington man who threatened to kill relative and pets in standoff pleads guilty to federal gun charge - Bangor Daily News
Eddington man who threatened to kill relative and pets in standoff pleads guilty to federal gun charge  Bangor Daily News

Shipt and Purina Launch Pet Lookalike Sweepstakes in Honor of National Pet Month - PRNewswire
Shipt and Purina Launch Pet Lookalike Sweepstakes in Honor of National Pet Month  PRNewswire

Neu-Tech Unveils a Pet Safe Sanitizing Blue Light That Kills a Wide Range of Bacteria - PRNewswire
Neu-Tech Unveils a Pet Safe Sanitizing Blue Light That Kills a Wide Range of Bacteria  PRNewswire

Did High Levels Of Forever Chemicals Make These NC Pets Sick? - WFAE
Did High Levels Of Forever Chemicals Make These NC Pets Sick?  WFAE

Pet food pantry growing and helping more pets across west Michigan - Fox17 - Fox17
Pet food pantry growing and helping more pets across west Michigan - Fox17  Fox17

PFAS found at high levels in pets near Chemours plant - NC Health News - North Carolina Health News
PFAS found at high levels in pets near Chemours plant - NC Health News  North Carolina Health News

Tolonen Family Pet Shop one of downtown Farmington's newest businesses - Hometown Life
Tolonen Family Pet Shop one of downtown Farmington's newest businesses  Hometown Life

Creative Acres Sanctuary founder says owners are giving up 'pandemic pets' as they head back to work - The Denver Channel
Creative Acres Sanctuary founder says owners are giving up 'pandemic pets' as they head back to work  The Denver Channel

KCBD’s Pet of the Day: Meet Edna - KCBD
KCBD’s Pet of the Day: Meet Edna  KCBD

Some Houstonians are returning pets they adopted during pandemic - Houston Chronicle
Some Houstonians are returning pets they adopted during pandemic  Houston Chronicle

Pets meant to bring companionship during pandemic are being brought back to animal rescues - WRGB
Pets meant to bring companionship during pandemic are being brought back to animal rescues  WRGB

Sick puppy tales lead Orange County to consider ban of retail pet sales - Orlando Sentinel
Sick puppy tales lead Orange County to consider ban of retail pet sales  Orlando Sentinel

Do you look like your dog? Here’s how Houston pet-owners can win a year supply of food for their furry friend - KPRC Click2Houston
Do you look like your dog? Here’s how Houston pet-owners can win a year supply of food for their furry friend  KPRC Click2Houston

Tiger filmed roaming Houston raises concerns about exotic pet ownership in the Lone Star State - Fox News
Tiger filmed roaming Houston raises concerns about exotic pet ownership in the Lone Star State  Fox News

Homeowner injured trying to save pets in SW Wichita house fire - KWCH
Homeowner injured trying to save pets in SW Wichita house fire  KWCH

Pets of the week: Bonded cats looking for a home together - Duluth News Tribune
Pets of the week: Bonded cats looking for a home together  Duluth News Tribune

Pet of the Week: Noble - Newnan Times-Herald
Pet of the Week: Noble  Newnan Times-Herald

GRPD: Armed robbery at 28th St. pet supply store - WOODTV.com
GRPD: Armed robbery at 28th St. pet supply store  WOODTV.com

Nevada SPCA continuing Pet Food Pantry by appointment - KLAS - 8 News Now
Nevada SPCA continuing Pet Food Pantry by appointment  KLAS - 8 News Now

Exotic pets are in the spotlight at expo in Chesapeake - 13newsnow.com WVEC
Exotic pets are in the spotlight at expo in Chesapeake  13newsnow.com WVEC

N.J. pets in need: May 10, 2021 - nj.com
N.J. pets in need: May 10, 2021  nj.com

President of Answers Pet Food Addresses “False Narratives” Surrounding Company - PetProductNews.com
President of Answers Pet Food Addresses “False Narratives” Surrounding Company  PetProductNews.com

Meredith Debuts 'Paw Print,' Print Magazine For Pet Owners 05/12/2021 - MediaPost Communications
Meredith Debuts 'Paw Print,' Print Magazine For Pet Owners 05/12/2021  MediaPost Communications

Scruffy to Fluffy makeover for adoptable pet Buster - WATE 6 On Your Side
Scruffy to Fluffy makeover for adoptable pet Buster  WATE 6 On Your Side

Animal Care & Control Reminds Pet Owners to Prepare for Wildfire Season - SCVNEWS.com
Animal Care & Control Reminds Pet Owners to Prepare for Wildfire Season  SCVNEWS.com

Livonia senator's 'Beagle Bill' inspired by city's efforts to protect pets in cold weather - Hometown Life
Livonia senator's 'Beagle Bill' inspired by city's efforts to protect pets in cold weather  Hometown Life

*** WATCH *** Several families, pets displaced after Dennis Port... - hyannisnews.com
*** WATCH *** Several families, pets displaced after Dennis Port...  hyannisnews.com

Pet of the week - WOAI
Pet of the week  WOAI

Pet Cats Fall For Optical Illusions Too - NPR
Pet Cats Fall For Optical Illusions Too  NPR

Boston News Crew Spots and Saves Stolen Dog During Segment on the Missing Pet - PEOPLE
Boston News Crew Spots and Saves Stolen Dog During Segment on the Missing Pet  PEOPLE

FWC To Pet Owners: Tag Your Tegus... And Your Green Iguanas, Too! - WFSU
FWC To Pet Owners: Tag Your Tegus... And Your Green Iguanas, Too!  WFSU

How Losing a Pet Can Make You Stronger - The New York Times
How Losing a Pet Can Make You Stronger  The New York Times

How To Find Affordable Pet Insurance - Forbes
How To Find Affordable Pet Insurance  Forbes

Shelter pets find new forever homes thanks to recent adoption events - 69News WFMZ-TV
Shelter pets find new forever homes thanks to recent adoption events  69News WFMZ-TV

Adopt-A-Pet Tuesday: Sonata, Lennon & Moxie - 9 & 10 News - 9&10 News
Adopt-A-Pet Tuesday: Sonata, Lennon & Moxie - 9 & 10 News  9&10 News

No Kitten Around! OC Firefighters Called In Rescue Family Pet - Patch.com
No Kitten Around! OC Firefighters Called In Rescue Family Pet  Patch.com

Andis Partners with Celebrity Pet Groomer | Industry News | petbusiness.com - Pet Business Magazine
Andis Partners with Celebrity Pet Groomer | Industry News | petbusiness.com  Pet Business Magazine

Local pet services company collars new North Austin location after 'ruff' year - CultureMap Austin
Local pet services company collars new North Austin location after 'ruff' year  CultureMap Austin

Spike in pet surrenders prompts Virginia Beach SPCA to educate owners on separation anxiety as some return to work - WAVY.com
Spike in pet surrenders prompts Virginia Beach SPCA to educate owners on separation anxiety as some return to work  WAVY.com

San Antonio Pets Alive! is overflowing with animals, administrators say; fosters and adopters needed - KSAT San Antonio
San Antonio Pets Alive! is overflowing with animals, administrators say; fosters and adopters needed  KSAT San Antonio

Pet Advice: Considerations before boarding your dog - KSNT News
Pet Advice: Considerations before boarding your dog  KSNT News

Celebrity Pet Groomer Jess Rona Partners With Andis® Company To Engage Pet Parents Across The Globe With Award-winning Tools - PRNewswire
Celebrity Pet Groomer Jess Rona Partners With Andis® Company To Engage Pet Parents Across The Globe With Award-winning Tools  PRNewswire

Tampa Bay area pets hoping to be adopted - Tampa Bay Times
Tampa Bay area pets hoping to be adopted  Tampa Bay Times

Pet Expert on Microchipping Cats and Dogs: It's 'the Safest Way to Find and Keep Your Pets' - PEOPLE
Pet Expert on Microchipping Cats and Dogs: It's 'the Safest Way to Find and Keep Your Pets'  PEOPLE

‘The Traveling Zoo’: Life on the Road, With Pets at Their Side - The New York Times
‘The Traveling Zoo’: Life on the Road, With Pets at Their Side  The New York Times

Boy Who Lost Leg Gets Puppy Born Without A Paw - Quad-Cities Online
Boy Who Lost Leg Gets Puppy Born Without A Paw  Quad-Cities Online

Pet photos from USA TODAY readers to brighten your day - USA TODAY
Pet photos from USA TODAY readers to brighten your day  USA TODAY

Vegan couple banned from owning pets after feeding their severely malnourished puppies a meat-free diet - Yahoo! Voices
Vegan couple banned from owning pets after feeding their severely malnourished puppies a meat-free diet  Yahoo! Voices

National Pet Day 2021: The best deals you can still shop for your dog or cat - USA TODAY
National Pet Day 2021: The best deals you can still shop for your dog or cat  USA TODAY

Pet of the Week: May 11, 2021, Denise - WTVD-TV
Pet of the Week: May 11, 2021, Denise  WTVD-TV

15-year-old cockatiel allegedly stolen from Topic Waters Pet Center - WEAU
15-year-old cockatiel allegedly stolen from Topic Waters Pet Center  WEAU

The Unshakeable Interspecies Bond of Pet Moms - Vogue
The Unshakeable Interspecies Bond of Pet Moms  Vogue

Michelle and Barack Obama Mourn the Death of Beloved Dog Bo: He 'Was a Constant, Comforting Presence' - PEOPLE
Michelle and Barack Obama Mourn the Death of Beloved Dog Bo: He 'Was a Constant, Comforting Presence'  PEOPLE

Police hunt murder suspect's pet tiger - WXIX
Police hunt murder suspect's pet tiger  WXIX

10 Eco-Friendly Pet Products to Help You Celebrate Earth Day with Your Cat or Dog - PEOPLE
10 Eco-Friendly Pet Products to Help You Celebrate Earth Day with Your Cat or Dog  PEOPLE

Paws Abilities, a locally-owned pet store, now open on 41st Street - KELOLAND.com
Paws Abilities, a locally-owned pet store, now open on 41st Street  KELOLAND.com

Tampa Bay area pets hope to share their love with you - Tampa Bay Times
Tampa Bay area pets hope to share their love with you  Tampa Bay Times

Stolen pet dies shortly after return - WILX-TV
Stolen pet dies shortly after return  WILX-TV

Advocates, opponents of Illinois bill regulating retail pet stores push their position - The Center Square
Advocates, opponents of Illinois bill regulating retail pet stores push their position  The Center Square

Vote 4 the Best: Pets - Voting - WDIV ClickOnDetroit
Vote 4 the Best: Pets - Voting  WDIV ClickOnDetroit

NVA Compassion-First pet hospital taking shape in east Vancouver - The Columbian
NVA Compassion-First pet hospital taking shape in east Vancouver  The Columbian

Pot for pets? House bill would allow veterinarians to prescribe marijuana - The Providence Journal
Pot for pets? House bill would allow veterinarians to prescribe marijuana  The Providence Journal

QUIZ: Which Anime Animal Would Be a Perfect Pet for YOU? - Crunchyroll News
QUIZ: Which Anime Animal Would Be a Perfect Pet for YOU?  Crunchyroll News

Are our pets fueling climate change and environmental hazards? - Vox
Are our pets fueling climate change and environmental hazards?  Vox

National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day: 40 essentials for new pet owners - New York Post
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day: 40 essentials for new pet owners  New York Post

Many Pandemic Pets In Colorado Need Fur-ever Homes… Again - CBS Denver
Many Pandemic Pets In Colorado Need Fur-ever Homes… Again  CBS Denver

Tampa Bay area pets looking for loving homes - Tampa Bay Times
Tampa Bay area pets looking for loving homes  Tampa Bay Times

Need More Cute Animal Content? Follow the Pets of Netflix's Pet Stars on Instagram! - POPSUGAR
Need More Cute Animal Content? Follow the Pets of Netflix's Pet Stars on Instagram!  POPSUGAR

Meet the Plus-Size Orphan Pets That Are Seeking New Homes and Healthier Routines in California - PEOPLE
Meet the Plus-Size Orphan Pets That Are Seeking New Homes and Healthier Routines in California  PEOPLE

5 arrested after Lady Gaga's dog walker shot, pets kidnapped: Police - ABC News
5 arrested after Lady Gaga's dog walker shot, pets kidnapped: Police  ABC News

Over 40 Percent of Pet Parents Look at Their Cat or Dog as a 'Starter Child,' Survey Finds - PEOPLE
Over 40 Percent of Pet Parents Look at Their Cat or Dog as a 'Starter Child,' Survey Finds  PEOPLE

Proposed pet breeding facility in Cochise County draws opposition from Tucson, beyond - Arizona Daily Star
Proposed pet breeding facility in Cochise County draws opposition from Tucson, beyond  Arizona Daily Star

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