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Distal Limb Anatomy and Hoof Care


New students start here. You need to be familiar with the this material before attending your first beginning anatomy clinic.  There are great educational tool available here for a quick reference and a simple understanding of the hoof and distal limb anatomy.

The Hoof Explorer

This website allows you to further explore the distal limb anatomy of a horse. All structures including bone, cartilage, arteries, veins, ligaments, tendons, and nerves are shown in an interactive 3D format.

Iron Free Hoof

This site contains more of the great photos and easy to understand distal limb anatomy and dissection, PHCP clinician, Paige Poss is know for. This will help them to “see” the inner hoof structures when looking at the foot from the outside. Students should be familiar with this information before they attend the PHCP Beginning Anatomy clinic.

The Essential Hoof Book:The Complete Modern Guide to Horse Feet

Susan Kauffmann and Christina Cline have done a great job writing a clear and concise book with lots of great photos and illustrations making it easily accessible for horse owners, new students of the hoof, as well as professionals looking for a deeper understanding of hoof care. This book covers some controversial and often confusing subjects such as peripheral loading, high/low syndrome, cracks, long toes/low heels, and abscesses to name a few.  Co-author Christina Cline is a PHCP mentor.

Pete Ramey

Pete’s website hoofrehab is a wealth of knowledge.

Under the Horse

Pete Ramey’s 10 Disk DVD Series is a must for anyone who is trimming horses. This series will teach you to recognize healthy hooves and pathology in hooves. Theory is presented as well as demonstrations of the steps taken to bring all hooves to a healthier state. Pete does a great job of taking veterinary research and translating it to practical use in the field. You will watch this one many times over as you progress through your training.

Care and Rehabilitation of the Equine Foot

The hoof care practitioner’s bible, written by Pete Ramey with contributions by many of the top

scientists and practitioners in the equine world. Every trimmer, farrier, and veterinarian should have a copy in their truck. Topics range from theory and practical trimming advice to nutrition, research, anatomy, hoof and body mechanics, and more.

Hoof Rehab How-To Articles

These free on-line articles written by Pete Ramey include topics like bars, frog management, boots and pads, etc. Pete keeps these articles updated with his latest teachings.

Understanding and Reversing “Sinkers” and Hoof Capsule Rotation

Check out this free 2 part webinar recording on Pete’s website.

The Glass Horse

This interactive anatomy of the equine distal limb is designed to increase the users familiarity with anatomical structures and also to allow examination of all surfaces of bones, all regions of blood supply, and the relations of anatomical structures to the complete foot.

Understanding The Horse’s Feet

This easy to understand book by John Stewart, MA Vet, MB, MRCVS is good for any level of experience. The text covers the basics of equine anatomy and structures, with easy to understand photos, diagrams, and text. Other topics include lameness, laminitis, insulin resistance, and internal foot problems.

The Lame Horse: James R. Rooney, D.V.M.

James R. Rooney, D.V.M.

This updated and expanded edition of is packed with the knowledge about lameness the late Dr. Rooney has accumulated since he wrote the first edition in 1974. He explains the function and mechanics of the front and hind legs, and discusses what happens when things go wrong. He covers fractures, injuries to tendons and ligaments, muscles, the nervous system and much more.