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Miniature Horses Require A Different Trimming Approach

by: Frank Luptoon of Oklahoma City

Frank Lupton of Oklahoma City has been trimming miniature horses for a long time. If a client asks you about shoeing one of these animals, he says it's important to realize a different approach is needed.

"Miniatures are animals whose hoof walls may be one-half to two-thirds as thick as those of full-sized horses," he says. "And they weigh only about one-sixth as much. Their feet wear drastically different than those of a full-sized horse.

"In miniatures, the toe wears more than the heel, so I always take off more heel than toe and the ratio is often 2-to-1 or more."

Lupton believes many farriers are inclined to trim them just the opposite of what would be best for them.

"Most people who go to school to be farriers are taught that you don't do much to the frog or heel on full-sized horses," he adds. "But in miniatures, you absolutely have to ruthlessly trim out that frog and heel, or they will end up club-footed. That's what I see 80% or more of the time when a farrier used to full-sized horses works on a miniature.

Lupton had much more to say about trimming the horses that are increasing in popularity as pets around the country.

To be continued ...

© Frank Luptoon of Oklahoma City

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