Hoof supplements are nutritional additives that are designed to promote healthy hooves. They normally consist of biotin, amino acids, minerals, omega fatty acids, and calcium. This combination of goodness can create healthy hooves. Specifically, hoof supplements promote the growth of new hooves and reduce the risk of cracks and splits appearing in the future.
If your horse suffers from a hoof-related ailment, consider adding a hoof supplement to their daily feed. Below, I’ve detailed the best supplements on the market today and explained the type of horse each would be best for.
Why Feed Your Horse Hoof Supplements?
Hoof health has a lot to do with a horse’s diet. While cracked hooves can be the result of bad weather and muddy conditions, hoove cracks can also be caused by poor nutrition. Plus, nutritional deficiency can also lead to slow growth and poor-quality horn.
As a horse owner, you need to take good care of your horse’s hooves. Not only do they need them to gallop and perform, but unhealthy hoof health will likely impact your horse’s well-being significantly. If your horse suffers from cracked and split hooves, try giving them one of the hoof supplements below.
They can create tougher hooves capable of withstanding all environmental conditions and won’t crack or break while performing.
However, as with all horse supplements, it’s important to introduce supplements to your horse as part of a balanced diet.
The 7 Best Hoof Supplements
Here’s a list of the 7 best supplements that’ll help improve hoof quality and help you achieve optimum hoof growth in your horses:
1. Best Pellet Supplement – Formula 707 Hoof Health
If your horse enjoys eating pellets, you could try them on the highly-rated Formula 707 Hoof Health product. This specially formulated hoof supplement works to prevent hooves from continuously falling apart. The mix of biotin, calcium, crude fibre, copper, and potassium (amongst many other nutrients) will provide your horse with the nutritional support necessary to maintain strong hooves.
If you were to feed your horse one serving per day, a standard tub of these pellets would last you roughly 160 days. While the asking price might be a bit high for a single tub, Formula 707 Hoof Health does last a while.
2. Best Hoof Supplement For Barefoot Horses – Hoof ReNu Advanced Hoof Supplement for Horses
If you’ve got barefoot horses and their hooves aren’t looking too healthy, you should try Hoof ReNu Advanced Hoof Supplement for Horses. This balanced biotin hoof supplement features quite a strong dose of nutrients, making it a good option for horses that particularly struggle to maintain healthy hooves.
In a single 18 g serving, your horse will receive an impressive 50 mg of biotin. This is balanced out with 315 mg of calcium, 42 mg of copper, 108mg of zinc, and 2000 mg of lysine.
After just a few months of using this supplement, I started noticing thicker walls appearing on my horse’s hooves. If your horse suffers from forming a heel, this supplement also works particularly well at promoting heel growth.
This supplement comes as a powder, so you can easily mix it into your horse’s grain or feed.
3. Best Budget Option – AniMed Remission Hoof Supplement
This product is sold at a reasonable price and should last you around 80 days. While this isn’t as long-lasting as other supplements, is the most long-lasting budget option you’ll find. Plus, if all goes well, you may be able to see results from the product at the end of the 80 days. This may give you an indication of whether it’s worth buying the product again or not.
AniMed Remission is a good product for testing out hoof repair supplements. It comes with 20 mg of biotin per serving, as well as chromium, zinc, magnesium, L-lysine, and methionine.
Adding AniMed Remission Hoof Supplement to my horse’s diet has made major improvements to some of my horses’ hooves. As an added bonus, it’s been noted to curb remittent laminitis.
4. Best Supplement For Horses With Gut Problems – Nu-Hoof Maximizer
Nu Hoof Maximiser contains 30 mg of biotin per 18 g serving and also contains optimal levels of other key nutrients such as folic acid, lysine, methionine, riboflavin, iodine, copper, and zinc; all of which support healthy hoof growth.
What I find great about Nu-Hoof Maximiser is that it comes with microbials, which work to effectively synthesise the vital nutrients found in the supplement. This reduces stress levels in the gut. So, if your horse tends to get an upset tummy when you introduce a new type of supplement or feed to their diet, this supplement may be the best option for them.
Nu-Hoof Maximiser is neither a pellet nor a powder, but more like a crumble. You can break it apart easily with your fingers and mix it in with your horse’s feed.
5. Best Combo Supplement – Horse Health Joint Combo Hoof & Coat
This impressive supplement doesn’t only contain essential vitamins to directly support hooves, but also additional vitamins to help improve coat and joint health, too. If your horse suffers from several health issues at once, this product allows you to take care of three in one!
Hoof conditioning is guaranteed through the inclusion of biotin in the ingredient list. This product also contains lysine, linoleic acid, zinc, methionine, and manganese; all of which can help boost your horse’s nutritional intake.
This healthy hoof horn promoter is also a good option if your horse is a fussy eater. These pellets come in cinnamon and apple flavours, which make them more palatable to your horse.
6. Best Wafer Supplement – Majesty’s Bio Plus Hoof Wafers
If your horse doesn’t like it when you mix supplements into their feed, but they do like getting treats, you should try Majesty’s Bio Plus Hoof Wafers. These wafer supplements can be fed directly to your horse as a reward for good behaviour. Your horse won’t be able to tell that it’s anything other than a snack thanks to the oat, molasses, and apple taste each wafer is bursting with.
Like treats, you should only feed your horse around 1-2 wafers per day.
These wafers contain good levels of biotin, with each serving providing your horse with 30 mg of the vitamin. It also contains lysine, copper, zinc, and crude protein.
Majesty’s Bio Plus Hoof Wafers actually double up as a coat supplement, too.
7. Best Seaweed-Based Hoof Supplement – Source Focus HF Hoof Supplement
If you’ve started your horse on other seaweed-based supplements and they liked it, you should try Source Focus HF Hoof Supplement. It’s great for boosting their health and hoof growth, and it’s even good for their skin and coat.
Seaweed has been shown to provide all kinds of nutritional support for horses, from creating healthier guts to protecting their stomach lining. This particular product has been devised to promote healthy hoof growth by combining dehydrated seaweed with biotin, zinc methionine complex, copper proteinate and zinc proteinate. This works to create a balanced biotin hoof supplement.
However, before buying this product, it may be a good idea to test whether your horse actually enjoys eating seaweed. Some of my horses take to it easily and eat it with relish, while others tasted it once and refused to eat it again.
Hoof Supplement Products Buying Considerations
No two hoof repair supplement products are made the same. Each of the products listed above comes in a different form, with different ingredients, and is sold for different prices. Before you make a purchase, consider the following:
The most important ingredient in hoof supplements is biotin. This vitamin, which is also referred to as B7, is an essential part of a horse’s diet. B7 is responsible for the forming of keratin, which is the protein that is directly responsible for hoof growth. If your horse doesn’t have healthy hooves, it could be due to a biotin deficiency.
Therefore, you need to ensure that the supplement contains a strong dose of biotin. At a minimum, you should feed your horse 20 mg of biotin per 500 kg of body weight. However, anywhere between 20 mg and 50 mg is a good range to aim for.
In addition to this, other ingredients that support hoof health include vitamins A and E, DL-methionine, calcium, lysine, zinc, and selenium.
You know your horse better than me! You should choose a liquid, pellet, wafer, or powder supplement based on what your horse normally eats. There’s no point investing in pellets if your horse has turned up its nose at pellets in the past!
Make sure the supplement you buy can easily be mixed in with your horse’s standard feed.
Given that these supplements take a while to show any form of results, you definitely need to consider the size of the product. You’ll need to feed your horse this supplement daily for around 8 months (at least) before you notice any form of hoof quality improvement.
Therefore, it’s probably a more financially sound idea to buy a large tub of horse hoof supplement. This way, you won’t have to frequently purchase new tubs, and you’ll be able to feed it to your horse every single day.
As I’ve made evident above, quality hoof supplement products come in a range of different prices. Set yourself a price range and pick the product that best matches your budget.
Each specially formulated hoof supplement mentioned above comes with its own taste. Compare the taste advertised with supplements and food that your horse has enjoyed in the past.
In order to reach optimum hoof growth, your horse actually needs to enjoy the supplement it’s eating. Otherwise, they may refuse to eat the supplement altogether.
When Will I See the Results from Hoof Supplements?
Healthy hoof growth can take a long time. You should start to see results of tougher hooves forming within three months of daily supplement feeding, but there is no guarantee. Overall, it’ll likely take between 9 and 12 months for your horse to form totally brand-new hooves.
Long-term supplementation is, therefore, necessary. There is no quick-fix hoof-strengthening solution. If your horse’s hoof health is particularly bad, you’ll need to invest in supplements over the long term.
It’s worth noting here that horse supplements can’t fix existing hoof horn. Rather, it’s used to grow new, less crack-prone horn.
Additional Ways To Improve Hoof Health
Adding hoof supplements to your horse’s diet will only improve your horse’s hoof health so much.
Keeping your horses in muddy and wet conditions promotes cracked hooves and heels. Bacteria can thrive in this kind of environment, which leads to irritated and eventually cracked hooves. So, make sure your horse isn’t kept in these kind of conditions for extended periods of time.
When they are exposed to these conditions, make sure you bathe and clean your horse’s hooves and legs. We’d recommend using a warm antiseptic solution and that you make sure that you dry your horse’s hooves afterwards.
Are horse hoof supplements worth it?
Horse hoof supplements are only really worth it if your horse is suffering from poor hoof health. In this case, hoof supplements can help your horse make a recovery. However, if your horse’s hooves are healthy and your horse eats a balanced diet every day, buying a horse hoof supplement may not be worth it.
Do hoof supplements actually work?
There’s no guarantee that hoof supplements will actually improve the health of your horse’s hooves. However, if you find a supplement product that contains high levels of biotin and that your horses like the taste of, it’s definitely worth trying. You won’t see any results from the supplements immediately, so you may need to feed your horse supplements over the long term.
Does apple cider vinegar actually help horses’ hooves?
If you dilute apple cider vinegar with water and gently apply it to a horse’s hoof, it can help improve minor ailments. Specifically, it can help with thrush, abscesses, and seedy toe (also known as white line disease). The enzymes found in apple cider vinegar can also promote hoof growth.
What does Epsom salt do for horse’s hooves?
Epsom salt can help draw out and remove infections and abscesses in your horse’s hooves. It may also be used to reduce swelling and soothe bruises.