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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 Sun. January / 26 / 2020

Legislature Considering Bill Making Shelter Dogs, Cats Official State Pets - NBC 6 South Florida
Legislature Considering Bill Making Shelter Dogs, Cats Official State Pets  NBC 6 South Florida

Pet Scene: Summit County's adoptable pets for the week of Jan. 26, 2020 - Summit Daily News
Pet Scene: Summit County's adoptable pets for the week of Jan. 26, 2020  Summit Daily News

Vancouver hospice program cares for pets so owners can be with dying loved ones - The Columbian
Vancouver hospice program cares for pets so owners can be with dying loved ones  The Columbian

PETS OF THE WEEK | Lifestyle - Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal
PETS OF THE WEEK | Lifestyle  Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal

Seattle organization that helps pets of people on the streets gets $50K grant - KOMO News
Seattle organization that helps pets of people on the streets gets $50K grant  KOMO News

Featured pets — Jan. 26 | Pets And Animals - Frederick News Post
Featured pets — Jan. 26 | Pets And Animals  Frederick News Post

Firefighters: Families should have fire escape plan that includes pets - UpNorthLive.com
Firefighters: Families should have fire escape plan that includes pets  UpNorthLive.com

Pets & People: Challenging bullies | Pets And Animals - Frederick News Post
Pets & People: Challenging bullies | Pets And Animals  Frederick News Post

Marion County Animal Services offers Pets of the Week - Ocala News
Marion County Animal Services offers Pets of the Week  Ocala News

Pets Are Part of Our Families. Now They’re Part of Our Divorces, Too - TIME
Pets Are Part of Our Families. Now They’re Part of Our Divorces, Too  TIME

Blood banks in need of donations from pets - mycbs4.com
Blood banks in need of donations from pets  mycbs4.com

Small Door, the OneMedical for pets, launches NYC location - TechCrunch
Small Door, the OneMedical for pets, launches NYC location  TechCrunch

Delta has a new upscale, high-tech pet carrier available. Cost? $850 - CNN
Delta has a new upscale, high-tech pet carrier available. Cost? $850  CNN

The days of passengers bringing pets on planes could be ending as U.S. looks to tighten service animal rules - MarketWatch
The days of passengers bringing pets on planes could be ending as U.S. looks to tighten service animal rules  MarketWatch

Aiken Dog Walks brings together pets and their owners - Aiken Standard
Aiken Dog Walks brings together pets and their owners  Aiken Standard

Pets of the week: What does your cat do when you're not looking? - yoursun.com
Pets of the week: What does your cat do when you're not looking?  yoursun.com

David Jenkins: Take care of your pets in all stages, seasons - Standard-Democrat
David Jenkins: Take care of your pets in all stages, seasons  Standard-Democrat

Adoptable pets in Tucson - Arizona Daily Star
Adoptable pets in Tucson  Arizona Daily Star

Looking for a Home: Adoptable pets - The Register-Guard
Looking for a Home: Adoptable pets  The Register-Guard

Hangzhou's Nova Pets is a grooming parlour where owners can hang out with their animals - Dezeen
Hangzhou's Nova Pets is a grooming parlour where owners can hang out with their animals  Dezeen

Delta will fly your pet in a GPS-tracked luxury carrier — for $850 per flight - The Points Guy
Delta will fly your pet in a GPS-tracked luxury carrier — for $850 per flight  The Points Guy

Dr. Fayez Assad | Getting to the root of dental disease in pets - TribDem.com
Dr. Fayez Assad | Getting to the root of dental disease in pets  TribDem.com

Meet This Weeks Adorable Adoptable Pets, Beanie & Marcie - Patch.com
Meet This Weeks Adorable Adoptable Pets, Beanie & Marcie  Patch.com

Join Big Joe at the Super Pet Expo in Edison — Feb. 8, 2020 - New Jersey 101.5 FM Radio
Join Big Joe at the Super Pet Expo in Edison — Feb. 8, 2020  New Jersey 101.5 FM Radio

Child injured, pets killed after truck smashes into Van Buren home - 4029tv
Child injured, pets killed after truck smashes into Van Buren home  4029tv

Police: Stop shooting pets - Daily Leader - Dailyleader
Police: Stop shooting pets - Daily Leader  Dailyleader

Travel Talk: Overtourism, Pets On Planes, New Restrictions on Cuba - Forbes
Travel Talk: Overtourism, Pets On Planes, New Restrictions on Cuba  Forbes

Students collect pennies for pets - KGNS.tv
Students collect pennies for pets  KGNS.tv

Kalkaska Couple Killed in House Fire Tried to Save Pets - 9&10 News
Kalkaska Couple Killed in House Fire Tried to Save Pets  9&10 News

How to protect your pet in harsh winter weather - khqa.com
How to protect your pet in harsh winter weather  khqa.com

Firefighter injured, pets lost after early Saturday morning fire in Philipsburg - Centre Daily Times
Firefighter injured, pets lost after early Saturday morning fire in Philipsburg  Centre Daily Times

Rescued pets from earthquake-ravaged Puerto Rico end up at East Coast shelters - Fox News
Rescued pets from earthquake-ravaged Puerto Rico end up at East Coast shelters  Fox News

Pets of the Week: Spicy, Luna, and Gloria - Franklin County Free Press
Pets of the Week: Spicy, Luna, and Gloria  Franklin County Free Press

Putting pets to the test for bacteria - WKOW
Putting pets to the test for bacteria  WKOW

Pets with Potential: Meet Maude - WCAX
Pets with Potential: Meet Maude  WCAX

Vernon native's company uses immunotherapy to treat pets' cancers - Journal Inquirer
Vernon native's company uses immunotherapy to treat pets' cancers  Journal Inquirer

Sheriff: Two killed in house fire trying to rescue pets - UpNorthLive.com
Sheriff: Two killed in house fire trying to rescue pets  UpNorthLive.com

Cat Named Bubble Wrap Among Pets Up For Adoption on Long Island - Long Island Press
Cat Named Bubble Wrap Among Pets Up For Adoption on Long Island  Long Island Press

A new vet subscription shows pets really are just like us — they’re suckers for good branding - The Hustle
A new vet subscription shows pets really are just like us — they’re suckers for good branding  The Hustle

Dissolving Dead Pets: Tucson Vet Offers Alternative To Cremation - Patch.com
Dissolving Dead Pets: Tucson Vet Offers Alternative To Cremation  Patch.com

Greyhound group's challenge is to turn racing machine into a pet - Los Angeles Times
Greyhound group's challenge is to turn racing machine into a pet  Los Angeles Times

Ice melt can cause irritation to your pet's paws - WXOW.com
Ice melt can cause irritation to your pet's paws  WXOW.com

Keep pets inside when there are freezing temperatures outside - WAFF
Keep pets inside when there are freezing temperatures outside  WAFF

Pets of the week: Maye Maye is very smart and lovable - Victoria Advocate
Pets of the week: Maye Maye is very smart and lovable  Victoria Advocate

This Week at the Capitol: Voter ID, school safety, pets, sex offenders, 'born alive,' smoking/vaping… - User-generated content
This Week at the Capitol: Voter ID, school safety, pets, sex offenders, 'born alive,' smoking/vaping…  User-generated content

Photos: Tips pet owners can use to help against coyote attacks - newportri.com
Photos: Tips pet owners can use to help against coyote attacks  newportri.com

Delta now offering ‘CarePod’ for travelers with pets - KSTU FOX 13 Salt Lake City
Delta now offering ‘CarePod’ for travelers with pets  KSTU FOX 13 Salt Lake City

Adoptable Pets of the Week (1/24/2020) | Local News - The Daily Progress
Adoptable Pets of the Week (1/24/2020) | Local News  The Daily Progress

Selma family, pets poisoned by carbon monoxide - WRAL.com
Selma family, pets poisoned by carbon monoxide  WRAL.com

Pets of the week: Ash, Tom Tom are seeking homes - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Pets of the week: Ash, Tom Tom are seeking homes  Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

It’s important to spay and neuter your pets - The Durango Herald
It’s important to spay and neuter your pets  The Durango Herald

Delta Launches New Cargo Carriers to Make Flying With Pets Easier - HouseBeautiful.com
Delta Launches New Cargo Carriers to Make Flying With Pets Easier  HouseBeautiful.com

7 year-old-Frankfort boy behind shelter pet bill - ABC 36 News - WTVQ
7 year-old-Frankfort boy behind shelter pet bill - ABC 36 News  WTVQ

Fliers May Have to Attest Their Pets Are Service Animals - Newser
Fliers May Have to Attest Their Pets Are Service Animals  Newser

Etowah County Animal Shelter features pets available for adoption - Gadsden Messenger
Etowah County Animal Shelter features pets available for adoption  Gadsden Messenger

Should You Give Your Pet CBD? Research is Hazy, Says Vet Group - WTTW News
Should You Give Your Pet CBD? Research is Hazy, Says Vet Group  WTTW News

Delta launches new airline pet travel option, feds float restrictions - WSB Atlanta
Delta launches new airline pet travel option, feds float restrictions  WSB Atlanta

Why are pets everywhere? Businesses, airlines cracking down on service animal rules - WZTV
Why are pets everywhere? Businesses, airlines cracking down on service animal rules  WZTV

SPCA Pet of the Week: January 24, 2020 - WABI
SPCA Pet of the Week: January 24, 2020  WABI

KCBD’s Pet of the Day: Mickey - KCBD
KCBD’s Pet of the Day: Mickey  KCBD

Pet Winter Safety - WJAC Johnstown
Pet Winter Safety  WJAC Johnstown

Pet Of The Week: Daphne - Pleasantville, NY Patch
Pet Of The Week: Daphne  Pleasantville, NY Patch

Are you leaving your pet outdoors in cold weather? These laws apply to you - WHNT News 19
Are you leaving your pet outdoors in cold weather? These laws apply to you  WHNT News 19

Claremore Man Makes Wearable Tributes To Beloved Pets - News On 6
Claremore Man Makes Wearable Tributes To Beloved Pets  News On 6

Meet Cap'n Crunch & Jack: Forsyth Co. Animal Shelter's pets of the week - 11Alive.com WXIA
Meet Cap'n Crunch & Jack: Forsyth Co. Animal Shelter's pets of the week  11Alive.com WXIA

Pets of the week: Great pets need great homes - Bucks County Courier Times
Pets of the week: Great pets need great homes  Bucks County Courier Times

Fires displace families, kill pets during past week - Taylorsville Times
Fires displace families, kill pets during past week  Taylorsville Times

Adorable & Adoptable–Pets of the Week: Malibu, Brandy, & Baby - SweetwaterNOW.com
Adorable & Adoptable–Pets of the Week: Malibu, Brandy, & Baby  SweetwaterNOW.com

Animal Tales: Lewiston woman keeps pets in style - Lewiston Sun Journal
Animal Tales: Lewiston woman keeps pets in style  Lewiston Sun Journal

Hometown Hero | Helping Pawz Pet Pantry - WSAZ-TV
Hometown Hero | Helping Pawz Pet Pantry  WSAZ-TV

Delta Just Introduced a New Pet Carrier That'll Make Flying Easier - Thrillist
Delta Just Introduced a New Pet Carrier That'll Make Flying Easier  Thrillist

Pet of the Week: 2020 pets - WTOP
Pet of the Week: 2020 pets  WTOP

NJ pets in need: Jan. 20, 2020 - NJ.com
NJ pets in need: Jan. 20, 2020  NJ.com

APHS ending pet adoptions at PetSmart at end of January - abc7amarillo.com
APHS ending pet adoptions at PetSmart at end of January  abc7amarillo.com

Pet Talk: First Aid for pets - KBTX
Pet Talk: First Aid for pets  KBTX

Animal advocates remind community to keep a close eye on outdoor pets this winter - WJW FOX 8 News Cleveland
Animal advocates remind community to keep a close eye on outdoor pets this winter  WJW FOX 8 News Cleveland

Three pets die after west Jackson house fire - WBBJ-TV
Three pets die after west Jackson house fire  WBBJ-TV

Shelter pets could become Florida's official state pet - WCTV
Shelter pets could become Florida's official state pet  WCTV

PetMed Express Inc (PETS) Q3 2019 Earnings Call Transcript - Motley Fool
PetMed Express Inc (PETS) Q3 2019 Earnings Call Transcript  Motley Fool

Lehigh Valley Pet Expo back for another year - WFMZ Allentown
Lehigh Valley Pet Expo back for another year  WFMZ Allentown

Snuggling with your pet, a good remedy for cold and flu, according to doctors - Clarksville Now
Snuggling with your pet, a good remedy for cold and flu, according to doctors  Clarksville Now

Overweight pets and health consequences - WGME
Overweight pets and health consequences  WGME

Florida pet store offering $1,000 reward after pricey puppies stolen - WSOC Charlotte
Florida pet store offering $1,000 reward after pricey puppies stolen  WSOC Charlotte

Foster-a-pet program at Mission Hills’ Best Friends center helps set adoptions in motion - LA Daily News
Foster-a-pet program at Mission Hills’ Best Friends center helps set adoptions in motion  LA Daily News

Pet detective helps families track down lost pets as a community service - KGW.com
Pet detective helps families track down lost pets as a community service  KGW.com

Celebs and their pets in 2020 - msnNOW
Celebs and their pets in 2020  msnNOW

Want To Adopt A Pet? Here Are 7 Charming Cats To Adopt Now In Los Angeles - CBS Los Angeles
Want To Adopt A Pet? Here Are 7 Charming Cats To Adopt Now In Los Angeles  CBS Los Angeles

Animal cruelty investigator: "Cold weather can be dangerous to pets" - WYMT News
Animal cruelty investigator: "Cold weather can be dangerous to pets"  WYMT News

The Activists Who've Saved 1000 Pets From Syria's War Zones - OZY
The Activists Who've Saved 1000 Pets From Syria's War Zones  OZY

Area pets available for adoption (PHOTOS), Jan 22, 2020 - OregonLive
Area pets available for adoption (PHOTOS), Jan 22, 2020  OregonLive

Four pets missing after northeast Austin duplex fire - KXAN.com
Four pets missing after northeast Austin duplex fire  KXAN.com

Reminder: Leaving pets outside in frigid temps is a crime - wpde.com
Reminder: Leaving pets outside in frigid temps is a crime  wpde.com

Pet Shop Boys: Hotspot review – evergreen dancefloor nous - The Guardian
Pet Shop Boys: Hotspot review – evergreen dancefloor nous  The Guardian

Shelter animals could become Florida's official state pet - FOX 35 Orlando
Shelter animals could become Florida's official state pet  FOX 35 Orlando

Law enforcement fighting to keep pets safe in the cold - newschannel20.com
Law enforcement fighting to keep pets safe in the cold  newschannel20.com

Pets of the Week: Jan. 20 - White County News
Pets of the Week: Jan. 20  White County News

Spotify playlists for your pets? OK, we’ll bite - TechHive
Spotify playlists for your pets? OK, we’ll bite  TechHive

Number of pets per household will increase as city opens negotiations with spcaLA - Long Beach Post
Number of pets per household will increase as city opens negotiations with spcaLA  Long Beach Post

Ribbon-cutting ceremony at Hospitality House officially launches new pet program – video - YubaNet
Ribbon-cutting ceremony at Hospitality House officially launches new pet program – video  YubaNet

New Clay County weed extremely toxic to humans, pets - INFORUM
New Clay County weed extremely toxic to humans, pets  INFORUM

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