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Life Data Labs, Inc.

Recognizing Nutrition Related Hoof Problems: Part 1

Dr. Frank Gravlee, founder of Life Data®, has worked with horses suffering from mild to serious hoof problems for over 50 years. During this time, his research has determined that horses with hoof problems often have nutrient deficiencies or excesses that negatively affect the dermal tissue structure. The hoof is dermal tissue and the hoof shows weakness more quickly than other dermal tissue structures due to its function and location. The horse owner should be able to recognize a few of the nutritional concerns that can occur in the hoof:

Excessive Bran

  • Crumbling Hoof and Poor Hoof Quality
    • Bran contains a high level of phytate. Phytate is a substance found in plant seeds containing phosphorus. The excessive amount of phosphorus from feeding too much bran interferes with the absorption of several minerals including calcium. Often, the result is a crumbling hoof due to calcium deficiency.

Hoof from Excessive Bran

Zinc Deficiency

  • Rapid Hoof Growth
    • A zinc deficiency can sometimes lead to rapid hoof growth; however, the hoof quality is low.
    • Some horses with a zinc deficiency need their hooves trimmed every 10-14 days.
  • Brittle Hoof Wall
    • The deficiency can result in poor quality keratin in the outer layers of the hoof wall to make the wall brittle. 

Biotin Deficiency

  • Hoof Wall “Peeling”
    • A biotin deficiency is rare; however, when it does occur, one will likely see thick layers of hardened tissue ‘peeling off’ the hoof wall much like the peeled layers of an onion.
    • Other dietary deficiencies usually accompany a biotin deficiency.

Vitamin A

  • Hair-like projections
    • Hair-like projections emerging from the hoof wall or the sole of a horse’s hoof can indicate either a Vitamin A excess or a Vitamin A deficiency.

Hoof with Vitamin A Deficiency 

In addition to the above there are many more ‘nutritional red flags’ too numerous to list here. We will continue expanding on this subject in future blogs. Use a quality hoof supplement such as Farrier’s Formula® to provide the nutrients to grow strong healthy hooves.

  • Recognizing Nutrition Related Hoof Problems +

    Recognizing Nutrition Related Hoof Problems: Part 1 Dr. Frank Gravlee, founder of Life Data®, has worked with horses suffering from mild to serious hoof problems for over 50 years. During this time, his research has determined that horses with hoof problems often have nutrient deficiencies or excesses that negatively affect Read More
  • Debunking Hoof Remedies for Equine Thrush +

    Debunking Hoof Remedies for Equine Thrush No horse owner wants to pick up the hoof of their horse to find the signs of thrush staring back at them. Seeing that blackish discharge associated with thrush or even catching a whiff of its unpleasant odor can ruin anyone’s day. We do Read More
  • To The Farrier +

    To the Farrier, Over 40 years ago when Farrier’s Formula® was first introduced, equine nutrition was in its infancy. Little was known about the impact nutrition has on the horse. When Dr. Frank Gravlee brought Farrier’s Formula® to the market he was met with skepticism. The farriers were one of Read More
  • The Importance of Maintaining a Regular Farrier Schedule +

    The Importance of Maintaining a Regular Farrier Schedule Regardless if your horse wears shoes or goes barefoot, hoof care is an important part of keeping your horse sound and comfortable. A major part of this maintenance includes trimming, resetting the shoes, and regular hoof care provided by the service of Read More
  • What Creates the Foul Odor of Thrush? +

    What Creates the Foul Odor of Thrush? A strong rotting smell is a well-known indicator of Thrush. If you’re a farrier or horse owner, you probably know the smell well. For those unaccustomed to the smell, it is like that of a rotten egg. The odor radiates from the hoof, Read More
  • Soft Hooves: Causes, Prevention, and Treatment +

    Soft Hooves: Causes, Prevention, and Treatment Soft hooves are one of the more common problems associated with wet and muddy conditions. When discussing the topic of soft hooves, it’s important to understand that the hooves’ main purpose is to support the horse. The hooves are designed to provide balance and Read More
  • Why Farrier’s Formula® Still Works +

    Why Farrier’s Formula® Still Works Nutrient Requirements of the Horse Although thousands of years have passed since the the days of the wild horse, the genetic makeup of the horse has changed little. Therefore, the nutrient requirements for maintenance have not changed significantly. What has changed is the involvement of Read More
  • Thrush and the Importance of Hoof Management +

    Thrush and the Importance of Hoof Management Thrush is often associated with wet and muddy conditions. When conditions are wet and muddy it can be difficult to properly clean out debris around the frog on a regular basis. The rapidly accumulating debris blocks oxygen to the hoof. Thrush results from Read More
  • Nutrition’s Role in White Line Disease Prevention +

    Nutrition’s Role in White Line Disease Prevention Burney Chapman, a world-renowned farrier from Lubbock, Texas, became one of the foremost authorities on White Line Disease back in the late eighties and early nineties.  At that time, he began to see an alarming increase in the numbers of white line cases Read More
  • Hoof Care Doesn't Stop in the Winter +

    Hoof Care Doesn't Stop in the Winter Winter is on it's way and Jack Frost will be blanketing many of our pastures with snow, freezing rain, and ice. Many of us are now concentrated on keeping our horses healthy, while maintaining body condition through this cold spell. We all have Read More
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12290 Hwy 72
Cherokee, Alabama
35616
Product of the USA
Google+

+1 800 624 1873
+1 256 370 7555
Fax: +1 256 370 7509
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Privacy Policy