Adjusting the Duplo Horseshoe to the Hoof

With its metal inlay, the Duplo Composite Horseshoe offers protection and support for the coffin bone and, at the same time, flexibility and shock absorption for the inner soft tissue structure, tendons and ligaments.

With three different shapes (round/oval/STS) and sizes in 4mm steps, there is a perfect horseshoe available for (almost) every horse. However, in order for the hoof to optimally benefit from the functionality of the horseshoe and to make sure the horseshoe doesn't get lost during the regular shoeing period, it is necessary to adjust the horseshoe to the hoof shape before shoeing.

Step 1: Choosing the Right Shape

Usually, you need round horseshoes for the front hooves and oval ones for the hind hooves. But as always, there are exceptions.

The decision for or against an STS model, however, isn't only based on the hoof shape but also the locomotor mechanics of the horse. With the slightly straighter toe area, you can position the horseshoe slightly towards the heels and facilitate breakover.

Step 2: Choosing the Right Size

The horseshoe size indicated always tells the width of the horseshoe in millimeters.

Currently, Duplo Horseshoes are available from 98mm to 190mm; in the medium run, the sizes up to 198mm will follow. In order to determine the right size for your horse, use a measuring tape or a ruler to measure the widest part of the newly trimmed hoof's bottom side - usually, it can be found at a short distance behind the frog apex.

Step 3: Shaping the Horseshoe to the Hoof

Even if the horseshoe fits well at first glance, it is still necessary to optimally adjust it to the individual hoof.

The following graphic shows how much material you could remove from the horseshoe without compromising its functionality. However, there are always exceptions to the rule; the individual adjustment of the horseshoe is therefore always at your local farrier's discretion.

We have noticed that many farriers only choose our horseshoes by their width and don't consider other adjustments (in the heel area in particular) necessary. That may work out in many cases. However, if a horseshoe isn't properly shaped to the hoof, the risk of loss and injuries increases - not only for your own horse but for the complete herd! The nails and possible quarter clips of a lost horseshoe (never mind whether it's a composite horseshoe or a conventional metal one) can cause severe injuries. In addition, a lost horseshoe can always take a part of the hoof wall with it.

That's why we recommend always checking the complete fit of the horseshoe and to adjust it to the hoof shape by means of an angle grinder or belt sander where necessary.

Step 4: Adding a Bevel

After having shaped the horseshoe, it's time for the finishing touches: adding a bevel to the upper and lower border of the horseshoe. With a bevel on the hoof side as well as on the bottom side, the horseshoes will glide off each other more easily if the horse steps on the front shoes with its hind hooves.

Step 5 (optional): Adding an Additional Protection against Forging

If your horse makes large steps with its hind legs and is (despite all adjustments) prone to forging, you can add an additional protection against forging on the bottom side of the horseshoe. Thanks to the additional incision in the heel area, the Duplo gives way more easily and it is less likely for the horse to pull the shoe off.

Special Cases: Threaded Horseshoes

The correct position for thread inserts is in the heel area.

If the thread insert is placed too far in the back, the horseshoe won't fit perfectly and the risk of losing it increases. In extreme cases, it is even possible that the posterior part of the Duplo is completely torn off. A customer has told us about such a situation; the thread inserts were barely placed below the heels.

In general, a wrong position of the thread inserts does not only increase the risk of losing the horseshoe but also causes indesirable pressure on sensitive areas of the hoof which can cause bruising or soreness.

Further Information

Size Determination

Shoeing Instruction

Correct Application



Please note: The information and instructions we offer are always the norm; please consider them as general recommendations. Of course, they may differ in individual cases, depending on the horse and its hooves. The application of our products is therefore always at the discretion of the local farrier.
Latest Update: 2022-02-22