Corns in Horses



In many cases, the corn or sole bruise will resolve once the source of trauma is removed. For corns, usually the removal of the horseshoe will allow the hoof to heal on its own. During this time, the horse should not be ridden. Sometimes, the sole will need to be trimmed as well. If there is an abscess, this will need to be drained and properly dressed. This will leave a very sensitive and irritated area that will need to be further treated and healed. The hoof will need to be cared for regularly, with foot baths and clean dressings applied one or more times daily, and the stall in which the horse is kept will need to be kept particularly clean. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications such as phenylbutazone (bute) are sometimes prescribed by your veterinarian to help keep the horse comfortable while the bruise or corn heals.


Living and Management


After the corn has been treated, it is important to give your horse time to heal. Corns are very painful, and when they are removed the procedure and exposed area can be painful as well. Depending on your horse's health status and the severity of the pain, your veterinarian may prescribe a pain reliever until your horse is able to stand comfortably on the wounded foot again.




The following are steps you can take to help prevent the development of corns:


  • Ensuring that properly sized shoes are used on your horse
  • Properly trimming the hoof with the size of the shoe (i.e. do not overtrim the hoof)
  • Avoid riding on rocky, rough ground for extended periods.
  • Allowing your horse some time off to recover if he develops sore feet while riding
  • Assessing if your horse truly requires horseshoes. Some horses do not need shoes, depending on their hoof structure and the amount and type of work they are required to do.