How do the seasons influence the hoof quality of your clients horses?
Dutch farrier Paul Clark explains what he learned from shoeing In Portugal about how to handle the change from wet to dry season.
Shoeing in Portugal
What I had to learn in Portugal is how to handle the changes that the feet undergo when going from dry to rainy season. In my first year I had a lot of lost shoes when the rain started. Now I make my shoes wider when I know that the rainy season will start within the next shoeing interval. That allows for the foot’s expansion when it becomes wet. This change in foot shape and size comes a lot faster than one would imagine. The clinches pop up within one day when the foot starts to expand. I typically have to go one shoe size bigger during the rainy season. The change back to the dry season is remarkable as well , but less complicated on the farriery side as it results less in shoes being lost. What I found in several cases is that the foot shrinks when it dries out, up to the point of contracting so much at the heels that they won’t touch the shoe anymore.”