Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Magic Cushion: Riley's friend

I've been intrigued by Magic Cushion® (MC) for some time. I'd thought of using it on Riley off and on, especially after reading the very positive things that are posted on the Chronicle of the Horse listserv. It's got lots of traditional ingredients and some new ingredients, and I'm told that it's held together in a moldable mincemeaty sort of a substance with the miracle ingredient of ground leather.

Why I took the leap and bought it
Many of you know that Ri is not in pads any more. He is doing fine and is on (very) irregular turnout, but when the pads came off initially he abscessed at the heel a few times. I decided to try MC, regular formula (there is also an "extreme" formula). In using it I also find it makes a great mechanical barrier from the inevitable soiled shavings that horses love to step in while stalled.

I'm a fan!
When you open the tub you might wonder what you have gotten yourself into. But have no fear!  It is simplicity itself, and if you wear gloves you will have no problem. The Chronicle forum members have experimented at length with MC and they've posted many uses and successes with MC. Absorbine has the authoritative method for using MC without wrapping:

In my experience, there is no learning curve to applying it without wraps. It is okay for long term use too (I called the company). So here is my method...
  1.  Clean all four hooves -- and make sure they are DRY.
  2. Put on a glove (I like having one ungloved hand) and open Magic Cushion.
  3. Take a ping pong to golf ball size out and put a thin-to-medium depth layer over  the entire sole. Press it in with fingers.
  4. Take a tiny bit of reasonably clean (but not brand new) shavings-- perhaps a scant quarter cup -- and lightly press into the magic cushion. This removes the "stick" and keeps Magic Cushion  in the hoof when the horse goes back into his stall. Note: New, super-dry shavings will work, but they are so dry they tend to pull the meds in the MC away from the hoof. Using bedding that is medium clean keeps the meds/active ingredients against the hoof sole, where you want it. 
  5. Put the horse in a stall that has been picked/is reasonably clean. The unsoiled shavings stick inside the hoof and create a dry cushion and a barrier. 
When you next pick your horse's feet, you'll find that no poop or used bedding is in contact with the sole -- In the hoof hollow, you'll find a layer of the pretty clean shavings you applied, and under that  the MC. Over time the MC gets pressed thin and the moisture is absorbed into the sole. The leather bits dry and solidify over the sole and even form a bit of a crust. Great protection!


  1. I LOVE MC, but unfortunately I don't think the no-wrap method would work in a barefoot horse. I've used it with duct tape booties or Vetrap & Cavallos, though, and it really is great stuff. (Did you see the thread in the COTH eventing forum about home-made MC? Quite interesting!?

  2. As usual, a very interesting review of a new product. Have to look into this one.

    Thanks for the info.

    And those boots in the post below are gorgeous! What a nice fit!

  3. That looks cool and the science seems sound. Most importantly, if it keeps Riley healthy and happy, it's a great product!

  4. Love Magic Cushion! But if you put just a little too much in it squooshes out the back and winds up on the elbow. So use sparingly.

  5. Good to know! I always stick a layer on my horse's hoof before the farrier applies the pads on the front. I may try this method for the hind feet, which do not have pads. How long does it stick to the hoof using this method?

  6. I think this is the only "real" advice and impartial info on the Magic Cusion and nice to learn from someone who has actually used the horse product. Thanks!


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