snow problems - hoofs packed with snow.


New Member
Sep 7, 2003
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Reading all your posts now, i have become very grateful for us not being blessed with snow! In nearly sixteen years i have only ever seen a few flakes of snow where i live which melt as soon as they hit the ground!

Hope you find a good cure for 'snowballed feet'! sorry i'm no help.

clepper ~X~


Active Member
Oct 23, 2001
Floppy - had a similar worry last year when I got out of sync with everyone else and was late getting snow shoes ! To be honest I wimped out and rode indoors.

Way back when - in the UK - I think it was axle grease or goose grease that was used. Vaseline is just the updated 'clean' version. But Vaseline may not be gungy enough to work like the 'old' remedies did.

I'm guessing that if you pack the hoof with something appropriate - it will act like a temporary snow pad. There's something at the back of my head saying Stockholm Tar - but as my head is full of gunge (ok, snot !) right now, it may be misleading me. :)

I also have some vague memory of people putting old style brand sacks over horses feet.....

Not got this problem this year, as I'm in sunny :cool: Scotland ! (Grey, damp, muddy, dark)


Apr 4, 2003
Oslo, Norway
Oops, Floppy - I should have read your post more carefully :eek:

I guess it's easier here - we *know* that we'll get ice and snow so we always prepare :D

Having thought about it again, how about boots? If they are quite smooth underneath the snow should fall off before it builds up too much. I think you can get some with quick-fit bindings. But I don't know if the hooves can be shod or not, or how well the boots last.
And I suspect they would be slippery if you should get ice on the ground.

Are there any wild horses that encounter snow every now and then?


Jun 24, 2000
As we don't usually ride if is snowing we only normally put grease or hoof oil into the area between the shoe to stop the snow from balling up (it works to stop mud balling too)


Active Member
Oct 23, 2001
Originally posted by OlavS
Are there any wild horses that encounter snow every now and then?

Yep - but they don't have shoes on or riders to carry ! Unshod hooves tend to be a bit flatter underneath so don't let the snow ball up as much, and they don't need to carry all the extra weight of a rider on artificial surfaces.

I think it depends a lot on the snow as well. When you are riding on deep snow, any build up matters less as you are still riding on top of the snow and don't hit the ground at all. But as soon as the snow gets thinner, then built up snow acts like stilts and is like being on ice skates :eek: (on stilts :eek: :eek: ).

So obvious the thing to do is go find some nice deep snow and have a nice canter :D Then teleport back to the stables ;) Insist no one actually drives on the roads so the snow stays deep and soft.:p

(oooo - I am missing the snow..............)(Not sure Fifi is - think she prefers having grass to eat !;) )


Active Member
Oct 23, 2001

Vaseline works well in theory but not always so well in practice ! What you can find is that it works for a short while but each 'ball' of snow ends up with a coating of the vaseline and once the vaseline is gone, you're back to square one.

No one in Sweden even attempted to grease horses feet - and they get a tonne of snow in the winter ! Its all snow shoes with studs, and pads for the soles of the feet.
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