thin soles


I have a pony that has thin soles and is now on a dry lot with screenings as a footing. No big rocks but lots of flat pieces of gravel, she needs to have pads taped on to keep her comfortable. I have another pony and a donkey on the same lot and they have no problem. Is there a supplement that could help grow more sole and make her feet tougher? She is 28 years old, has foundered in the past and is barefoot and not riden. Thanks so much for any advice!

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Tucker,

Need to make sure the trim is optimal and no sole gets removed during trims, diet is tight, if she's PPID, needs meds to control that.

If she still has issues once all those puzzle pieces are in place, you could try jiaogulan to help increase circulation and aid in growing more foot.


Moderator/ECIR Support

Josephine Trott

Hi Tucker
In addition to everything Lavinia said you could try Hoof Armor as an alternative to taping on pads until your mare grows healthier feet

davis, CA 06/09

Julie Thomas

Hi Tucker.  I have the same challenge with my QH - soles so thin he doesn't even want to walk around in the nice soft sand in the round pen.  He is 17, has Cushing's & is on prascend, is about 50 lbs over weight, on a controlled diet, and has very thin soles.  His hay has been balanced so he's getting all the right vitamins & minerals.  We trim him every 4 weeks right now to get his toes back and fix under run heels.  I added jiagulon to his feed about 2 weeks ago so I'm not sure yet if its helping or not.  To keep him comfortable while we work our way toward better soles, he wears Cloud boots.  We have two pairs so I rotate them daily so I can dry them out (he must sweat in them as its been dry here).  Next week when my farrier is here we plan to try the hoof armor so he can get out of the boots for a while (I realize this doesn't help fix the problem, it's purely another effort to find comfort until the problem is fixed).  I'll be sure to share how well it works for us. I hope you'll be sure to share your success story so we can all learn from you!  Best wishes!  :)

Collaeyn Hazen

Josephine, I just purchased hoof armor but didn’t apply it yet. Does it actually provide relief? It is such a thin layer that I’m not sure how it can work... can you tell me more?

Collaeyn, Monty, Shark, and Duke
Sewell, NJ
June 2020   (Monty pics)   (Shark pics)

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hoof Armor will help to keep the sole from abrading on a barefoot horse. It contains Kevlar, the material used in bullet-proof vests, so is quite strong, yet pliable. That may be enough to keep a horse comfortable and sound while it continues to grow a stronger foot.

It isn't always enough but certainly something that is worthwhile to keep in mind as an option you my want to experiment with.


Moderator/ECIR Support


Tucker, years ago, maybe 9, back on the old Yahoo group, I followed a gal named Linda and her horse Pap Ballou.   She was experimenting with several different approaches with his feet and it was fascinating to follow.    Her posts often included links to hoof pros like Pete Ramey on subjects like thin soles and sinking.   The big takeaway for me was how important it is to engage the sole and not just the frog and the walls.   Chappy was more comfortable and gained sole depth once I had him padded to engage the sole, also being careful to not cause discomfort.  He also was getting a proper realigning trim.  
Laura K Chappie & Beau over the bridge
2011 N IL