The hand held thermometers, and would probably only get one the ones that measures to a 1/10 of a degree, can be a valuable tool in keeping your horse safe. You can check your whole horse or just maybe hoofs or hocks, get to know what temperature that they are on a day to day basis so you know when something is not right. The model with the laser is especially handy. My only recommendation would be that make sure you measure form approx. the same distance each time.... 2 feet, 3 feet, 10 feet, whichever you choose, but keep it consistent, you don't have to be right on the money but try and get it close.
If you notice the red dot in the middle of the right hoof, that is the laser pointer from the Themometer..
I don't do this everyday, but it would be a good idea to do it everyday, especially with a horse that is in a hard work program. If you include it in your daily check it would take you less then 30 seconds, and could save you and your horse a lot of down time.
Do this inspection only if your horse has been in the shade for awhile. Horses will vary on their deviations in temperatures between limbs, but will more then likely be within 5 degrees of each other. I would not worry about anything under the 5 degrees. Once you have a baseline on your horse over a period of time and all of sudden you see that 5 degree temperature rise I would certainly take a closer look.
You can find these Thermometers on the Internet, and they are in the $50 range and the Raytec ones seem to be very popular. Again, I would only purchase one with the laser and one that can tell temperature variations to the 1/10th of a degree.
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