Does your horse go for varying amounts of time between shoeings or trimmings? That may not be quite so harmless as “Oops! Forgot to call the farrier!” might seem.
When a horse’s feet grow for too long without staying to a routine, their toes typically grow long and their breakover point changes. When the breakover changes and becomes too far forward, this can put stress on the suspensory apparatus and other soft tissue structures in the horse’s leg. This can happen whether the horse is shod or barefoot. If the foot continually grows out in front of the horse for too long, eventually underrun heels and other problems may occur.
Some farriers may say that horses should be shod more frequently, around every four weeks, during the summer, but can go longer between visits during the winter. Of course, this often depends on the horse, his work level, his conformation and food condition, and any injuries that may exist. Consult your farrier as to how often your horse should be shod or trimmed, mark it on your calendar or set an alarm on your phone, and stick to it.