Hoof Care

When Rot is Afoot: Thrush

You start to pick out your horse's hoof and get a nasty whiff of what can only be described as rot . . . Your horse has thrush.

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By: Nicole Kitchener |

Thrush is a bacterial infection, which softens the frog of the hoof, causing the tissue to disintegrate. It usually isn’t serious and minor cases can be easily treated, however, if allowed to develop, thrush can penetrate and destroy the deeper, sensitive areas of the hoof. Symptoms include a foul odour, discharge that’s sometimes black and pus-filled, a ragged, cracked frog, tenderness, lower-leg swelling and lameness. the primary bacterium is anaerobic and thrives in the damp, dark areas of the hoof bottom.

This article, which appeared in the Canadian Horse Annual, explains how to handle a case of thrush. Various commercial and homemade treatment preparations are described and suggestions on how to best apply them. Several tips are also given on thrush prevention including: hoofpicking at least once a day, providing regular exercise to maintain good blood flow to the hoof, and ensuring regular trims/shoeing.

To read more, go to: https://horsesport.com/magazine_articles/combatting-thrush-horses-hooves