Hoofs


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Hoofs

 

the horny formation at the ends of the digits of some mammals (chiefly the ungulates), representing a modification of claws. Hoofs consist of walls (corresponding to the nail layer), the soles (or sole layer), and the frogs (the digit cushion), which give way to an L -shaped extended sole. Hoofs developed during adaptation for rapid movement on hard terrain, when the weight was placed on the final joints of the digits. Broad flat hoofs are common to animals that travel primarily on relatively soft terrain (such as northern deer); narrow hoofs that are very hard at the end developed for hard, steep terrain (as in goats). Elephant hoofs have thin walls and cover only the front part of the digit tips.

References in classic literature ?
His hoofs pounded the grass like hammers, and presently he began to gallop
The mules drew well, and their hoofs went up and down upon the road.
The hoofs of his horse often threatened the heads of the running men, but they scampered with sin- gular fortune.
All eyes turned towards a small door, which opened, and, to the great agitation of Gringoire, gave passage to a pretty goat with horns and hoofs of gold.
The squadwon can't pass," shouted Vaska Denisov, showing his white teeth fiercely and spurring his black thoroughbred Arab, which twitched its ears as the bayonets touched it, and snorted, spurting white foam from his bit, tramping the planks of the bridge with his hoofs, and apparently ready to jump over the railings had his rider let him.
Jim accepted it as a mere detail, and at his command the attendants gave his coat a good rubbing, combed his mane and tail, and washed his hoofs and fetlocks.
His neatly shaped white body was covered with regular bars of dark brown, and his hoofs were delicate as those of a deer.
You are very complimentary to my partner, indeed," asserted the donkey, rubbing his front hoofs together as if highly pleased.
Mukhorty overtook them, and struck his hoofs against the back of the sledge in front of them.
The velvet of young grass was torn up by its hoofs, and its terror of the stream was such, that, when fetched to the edge at a canter, it stiffened and crouched to an abrupt stop, then reared on its hind-legs.
Having no fingers or hands the beasts were rather clumsy, as you may guess; but Dorothy was surprised to observe how many things they could do with their stiff, heavy hoofs.
It was as big as a mountain, with horns on its head, and a long tail, and it had hoofs divided in two.