Read our blog tips, tricks, and what you need to know about Barefoot Equestrian Riding and keeping your horse healthy.

Cavallo Hoof Boots…For Healing!

By Carole Herder

Which piece of equipment would you like to see on your horse’s hoof??



Believe it or not, the first image is a homemade hoof bandage made of cotton wool, brown paper and duct tape! It was ‘designed’ to keep poultices and wound dressings in place but as you can imagine, had very little effect.

You may have heard me refer to the well-known phrase before: No Hoof, No Horse. Well, when there is a problem with the horse’s hoof, it needs to be looked after meticulously as many issues develop here, lameness is only one problem you will encounter!

Whether it is an abscess, a wound from a sharp object, bruising, white line disease or any one of the many things that affect the feet, vigilant care should be top priority. And it has to be said, brown paper and duct tape will not keep the bacteria away!

A hoof boot is the optimal way to keep a bandage on and keep a hoof clean and protected. It will ensure dressings are kept securely in place and muck and dirt are kept to a minimum. By holding strong with a comfortable fit, the Cavallo hoof boot will allow poultices the time to get to work and will ensure herbal creams and remedies have the time to really absorb, without being rubbed off by the environment.

So rather than waiting for day when you know there is something wrong with a hoof and wrapping it up with duct tape, vet wrap or whatever else is lying around, get yourself a hoof boot because when it comes to your horse’s health and their feet, take no chances. Hoof boots – not just a modern alternative to metal shoes for the trail, but a vital piece of first aid equipment too!

Oh, and by the way – here’s a little Tip if you need to poultice: Cavallo Boots provide built-in drainage for aeration and riding in all terrain. You can simply stick a piece of duct tape on the inside to cover the drainage holes and turn your Cavallos into poultice or soaking boots!

Cavallo’s….. the ultimate Multi-Purpose Hoof Boot…

Horse Hoof Boots

A Balanced Diet Creates a Healthy Hoof

By Carole Herder

“The secret of freedom lies in educating people, whereas the secret of tyranny lies in keeping them ignorant” – Maximilien Robespierre

Perhaps a little dramatic, but, in a way, totally accurate. I often speak about the power of knowledge and education and believe that the more we learn and the more we share good information, the better our lives and our horses lives will be.

For those readers new to this blog (and for those avid readers, here is a little reminder!), a natural diet, a natural environment and a natural trim are three pillars to good horse hoof care. An essential part of the diet is minerals, and these must not be forgotten about as only a combination of factors can produce the best possible hoof. April 10.15

The hoof wall is about 93% protein and the key one here is keratin. The chemical structure of keratin differs depending on whether it makes up soft tissue or hard tissue, and this is what gives horses tough hoof walls alongside more elastic frogs. Deficiencies in protein can affect hoof growth and quality so here are some key points to remember:

• Zinc is needed for cell multiplication and the assembly of keratin.

• Copper is linked with the formation of connective tissues and this is a mineral that can be deficient in certain geological areas.

• A high forage diet should provide many vitamins, including biotin.

• Essential fatty acids, selenium and vitamin E are all also crucial

There are plenty of feed supplements you can buy to ensure your horse is getting the right dose of minerals, but be careful. Did you know that too much zinc can interfere with copper and too much copper can cause zinc deficiency? Too much phosphorous will inhibit calcium absorption and too much calcium will inhibit phosphorus absorption?

If you are unsure of what, if any, minerals your horse is lacking or have other concerns about their diet, you can avail of an equine nutritionist who will assist with designing a balanced feeding program for your horse taking into account breed, age, workload, reproductive and health status. The program will focus on correct mineral intake and should include pasture/hay testing. A balanced diet is essential for health and performance in your horse.

‘Best of America by Horseback’ Honors Veterans

By Carole Herder

‘Best of America by Horseback’ is America’s favorite trail riding TV show. Hosted by Tom Seay, this gorgeous series takes viewers to beautiful riding destinations around the country. The show features trails, area history, local riders, location facilities and of course, fantastic scenery.

Tom and co-host Del Shields organize amazing trips around the country, all of which you can participate in, but July 2015 will see Tom doing something extra-special. He will be laying a wreath at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the Arlington National Cemetery. It is on behalf of all of the horse community and you are invited to partake. There are no fees or costs and no advertising avenues, simply a gesture from the horse world to say thank you to the service people.

Horse hoof boots Tom is presenting the wreath and a book with a list of people that wish their names added. The book contains the names of horse people, their families and friends. It is simply a list of their names and the only other writing on the book will be “We remember and honor…..”. The group have already had thousands of names sent to them to be included in the book. Many had family in the military; others did not but wish to honor the veterans.

We continue to live in precarious times, and knowing that war may not be the best solution, we honor the brave men and women who take up the cause and risk their lives.

For more information, please visit

Worming in the New Millennium

By Carole Herder

Worms, worms, worms. Not a nice topic for discussion but nonetheless much talked about, particularly in the equine world. Do you worm every 6-8 weeks, as recommended by the product manufacturers? Do you worm the ‘standard’ three months, using a rotating list of commercial brand products? Do you not worm at all, pick up poo every day and hope that all is ok??

Most of us know that a deworming routine should be based on a fecal egg count but I guarantee, very few of us follow this practice. The count would allow us to determine whether the horse is carrying a low, moderate or high worm burden and we could then act accordingly. Unfortunately, this is simply not being done in general and it is a much more common practice to worm our horses routinely and frequently, without having the faintest idea of what type of parasite we are targeting or whether the program we adhere to is even being effective. We are also running the high risk of making our horses (and their worms!) immune to market products.

Horse Hoof Boots

While many of us do not do fecal egg counts, there are those of us who diligently run the numbers by sending away samples of dung and using the results to tweak their deworming program, by either changing the product they use or reducing the use of products overall (this should be our aim!). Then of course there are the scientific types (not me!) who have a DIY system using a microscope, McMaster slides, beakers, a pipette, a flotation solution, and who knows what else!

Well, for everyone interested in starting or continuing fecal egg counts as part of your deworming program, here is something that may help you in the future: an American firm has developed a smartphone app capable of providing a fecal egg count for horses. There is still a certain amount of ‘handling’ to be done but it is a quick, simple and easy to use system which requires no manual counting. “The Parasight System provides quantitative results in less than five minutes and emails imaged test results with egg count / type and treatment recommendation….” – wow! Doesn’t that sound fun?

The new system is due to be released next January and I think it should definitely be considered as part of your horse equipment.

You can find out more by going to the following link:

  And of course, always remember that healthy horses move. A lot. And horses move a lot more comfortably with Cavallo Horse Hoof Boots.

Ride Your Way to the Equine Lifestyle Festival in Australia!

The team at Cavallo Horse & Rider wants to make sure YOU are entered in ACTHA’s draw to win a free week-long trip to Australia and the Equine Lifestyle Festival this November! (Here’s more on what’s happening at the festival – briefly!)

Horse Hoof Boots

If you love horses and have got the travel bug, this trip of a lifetime will introduce you to the exciting equine culture “Down Under” and offer you a glimpse of Australia’s stunning terrain. Enjoy the carefree Aussie culture, savor a shrimp off the Barbie, see the Joeys bounding freely…but watch out for those Crocs!

Included in the prize package for a lucky winner and their guest:

• Free return coach Airfare and hotel accommodation

• Free tickets to the 3 day Equine Lifestyle Festival

• Free return train tickets from Sydney to Hawksberry.

Here’s how you can enter to make it happen…

• You will be automatically entered in the draw each and every time you ride in the Open or Pleasure Division of an ACTHA Arena Challenge or ACTHA Trail Challenge.

• You will also receive an extra entry if you receive a Cavallo Judges Pick Award at any ACTHA event.

• Use your Cavallo Hoof Boots to increase your chances of winning! Just dress your horse up in Cavallo Boots and ride in any ACTHA event to be entered once more in the draw!

• Get another entry by hosting an ACTHA event (AOC or CTC)! Gain an extra entry for each and every event you host!

*The ACTHA Ride Year ends May 31st – so time is running out for a chance to win this trip “Down “under”!

For more information on how you can win the coolest draw of 2015, check out these links:

Read more:

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