The Horse's Hoof Newcomer's Info
by Yvonne Welz ©2006
Newcomers - Please read: What is Natural Hoofcare? What is a Natural Trim? How to Get Started in Barefoot Hoofcare
Help! How do I choose a Trimming Method? Help! How do I choose a Natural Hoofcare Professional?
It is so much more than just barefoot! We believe in Natural Hoofcare. We support hoof care that creates functional, healthy bare hooves. We advocate more natural, humane living conditions for our equine friends. We encourage all forms of hoof care and horse care that promote these basic principles. We have three simple requirements for a successfully barefooted horse in the end result: 1) The horse is sound, 2) has correct hoof form and function, 3) and the hooves do not deteriorate over time. This type of trim is a "psysiologically correct trim" for all equines. No matter what, barefooted horses provided with a natural lifestyle will be sounder and healthier than horses that are shod and stalled.
You do not need 100 acres of pasture to have healthy, barefooted horses! There is the perfect ideal, and then there is the REAL WORLD. Click here for an article on real life natural boarding. Every step you can take, no matter how small, towards a more natural lifestyle will only benefit your horse! It's not an all or nothing situation. Just take what you have and make the best of it. Your horse will thank you for it.
If you have a young horse, just don't put shoes on it in the first place. If you put the horse into work, and there are problems with the feet, try to figure out why. The bare hooves are barometers of the horse's state of health and its current living conditions, and if something is wrong, you need to know, and you need to fix those problems. Any young horse given a healthy lifestyle and trimmed correctly can remain barefoot in just about any performance career. If you are told the horse needs shoes, ask why. If your current farrier can't provide a barefoot trim that keeps the feet healthy, find someone who can. Educate yourself and empower yourself to be in control of the health of your horse's feet.
"No need to argue about it, just get out there and ride your barefoot horses!"--Yvonne Welz
"The constant wearing of shoes is responsible for more poor feet than common neglect...If a horse has good feet, give him a chance to do his work barefoot. If he can, don't shoe."--John Richard Young, "Schooling for Young Riders," 1970
"Common sense certainly is uncommon, if we are to judge by many of our popular ideas on horse management."--John Richard Young, "The Schooling of the Western Horse," 1954
©2006 by The Horse's Hoof. All rights reserved. No part of these publications may be reproduced by any means whatsoever without the written permission of the publisher and/or authors. The information contained within these articles is intended for educational purposes only, and not for diagnosing or medicinally prescribing in any way. Readers are cautioned to seek expert advice from a qualified health professional before pursuing any form of treatment on their animals. Opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher.
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