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Benefits Of Hoof Trimming Maintenance

Discover the benefits of hoof trimming in this complementary guide! Trim-Tec offers cattle foot trimming equipment that makes it easy to experience the benefits for yourself in your own herd. Read through this guide and then place an order for the hoof trimming wheels and discs that you need to give your cattle a flawless trim with a show finish. Shop in Trim-Tec's online store today!

Benefits of Hoof Trimming

Because of the state of the industry today, environments within individual dairy farms are less than ideal. Cows kept in these issue-prone areas tend to have hoof growth and wear that are no longer within a normal and natural ratio; making maintenance trimming, on a routine basis, a necessity. Whether it be from oversized, or overgrown claws or the worn down hoofs that have suffered excessive wear, an uneven growth-to-wear ratio can stress the inner hoof, cause lesions and could possibly even stress the skeletal system.

Many factors of environment and herd management have different effects on the varied tissues and anatomy of the hoof. Both hoof trimmers and dairy management personnel should be knowledgeable in being able to identify certain hoof issues, the cause of said issue, and to be able to correct the problem, whether it be environmental or nutritional. Corrective trimming techniques, using the proper hoof trimming tools, can improve the overall health of the herd. Keeping the normal growth-to-wear ratio is an important aspect of regular maintenance trimming and a professional trimmer should have extensive knowledge regarding such.screenshot-7.png

This knowledge, that an owner should expect their professional trimmer to possess, includes the type and hardness of horn tissue. Corium is the material present that produces horns, with differing degrees of hardness,  and there are four types of corium present in a hoof.

  • Perioplic: produces heel horn, and below the coronary band, the perioplic horn. This horn is generally somewhat soft, flexible and immature.

  • Coronary: produces wall horn, the hardest and most durable tissue able to stand up to the bearing the heaviest load and the most stress.

  • Laminar: produces white-line horn, the softest of horn tissue. Serving as the bridge between wall and sole tissues, it flexes as needed but is also susceptible to bacteria growth.

  • Solar: produces sole horn, which is slow-growing and soft. It also resists cracking and breaking and cuts easily.

When trimming and balancing claws, regardless of the type of hoof trimming blade you may be utilizing, remember to do so correctly. An unbalanced hoof can cause the softer sole to do the work of the wall horn and the animal will suffer for it. Keeping the hoof hard and dry is also instrumental to proper hoof health. Growth rate is faster in claws that are moist, diseased or pliable and consequently,  are also open to abnormal wear rates.

Healthy horn tissue can be stimulated by restoring balance and using corrective trimming methods. Use of foot blocks and removal of damaged tissue and loose horns promote recovery in vulnerable hoofs. Special attention should also be paid to the length of the toe. Wear ratio is often affected with the differences in toe length. Toes can become too short in cases of excessive wear, and conversely, the toe can become longer and  thicker where feet have been allowed to be overgrown and thick.

Keeping observant of possible issues and having the proper hoof trimming blades and tools available are important steps towards a complete hoof maintenance program. A hoof maintenance trimming program, done on a consistent basis can address issues, avoid problems and increase the health and vitality of the entire herd.