Subscription Required


Feeding Biotin for Hoof Health

Supplemental biotin (above “required” amounts, because there is no such requirement for vitamin) is the only nutrient shown to improve hoof quality.

Thumbnail for Feeding Biotin for Hoof Health

By: Shannon Pratt-Phillips, Ph.D. |

Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin that is found, in varying levels, in typical equine feeds (alfalfa, oats, soybean and corn) and is synthesized by the microbial organisms found within the horse’s large intestine (within the cecum and colon). These microbes appear to be sufficient in synthesizing biotin for the horse, as biotin deficiency has not been documented and there is no dietary biotin requirement for horses. Biotin functions as a component of several metabolic enzymes, and is involved in cellular growth. Biotin supplementation has been shown to improve hoof horn quality in horses that have poor hoof quality. This affect appears to take upwards of six to nine months, and, while some studies have reported increases in hoof growth and hardiness, these effects are inconsistent. Research has suggested that the outer component of the hoof wall is sensitive to biotin supplementation, while the inner structures may be more sensitive to…

Subscription Upgrade Required

Upgrade your subscription now for full access or register to continue reading.


Subscribers: Enter the email and password connected to your subscription.

First time logging in?

Click here.

Don't have an account?

Click here.
Tablet/Mobile users must also refresh after login to activate subscription.

Subscribe now and enjoy full access to

Your subscription includes an annual subscription to the print version of Horse Canada

as well as unlimited access to all digital content on

digital subscription
View Print and Digital Subscription Offers