Thought, fact and quote for the day 26/9/12
Seven Acre Horse Sanctuary - Giving horses/ponies a second chance..
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Thought, fact and quote for the day 26/9/12

Quote 4the day: What might scare us might not scare them but feed them those vibes and they will be just as scared as you.. be brave..
Fact 4the day: What is Barefoot Trimming?
To put it very simply - barefoot trimming is about simulating and stimulating. First we are simulating the wear horses' feet would get if they were free to get all the exercise they needed to keep their feet self-trimmed. Secondly we are trimming the foot to stimulate it to grow healthy and in the proper form for each individual foot.

In other words we ...are helping nature - key word "helping". We are not trying to impose our idea of perfect form on the foot. On the contrary, we read each foot to see what IT is trying to tell us it needs.

Is a Natural Barefoot Trim different than just leaving my horse barefoot, or having a normal farrier trim?

Absolutely! The exception would be if your horse lives on the type of terrain and gets adequate exercise to facilitate self-trimming. (And some horses do!). Most horses do not get enough exercise to wear their hooves sufficiently to give them the short, tight feet they would have in the wild.

The hoof wall grows continually. If growth exceeds wear (this is the most common scenario) then the feet become too long and the hoof capsule starts to deform. Our goal is to keep the feet at the optimal length for each horse. And that length may well change as the horse's foot becomes more healthy. There is no perfect length. A barefoot horse left untrimmed can be just as bad off as a horse with shoes on, or a horse who is trimmed badly.

In addition to keeping the length under control, we also use a "mustang roll" to keep the toes from running away (a common problem) and the breakover where it belongs. If you have seen horses with shoes, then you've probably noticed that the shoes have been worn in such a way that the front is rounded. This is how horses try to wear their feet. The roll is important, it not only saves the horse the work of doing it themselves, it keeps the foot from chipping.

How often should my horse be trimmed?

The best thing is to trim every 5-6 weeks. In some cases, due to hoof problems, more frequent trimming may be necessary. After being trimmed a few times the feet may begin to self regulate. That means that the growth will start to balance with the wear. When this happens many horses can go 8 weeks or longer between trims.

My horse normally goes 8 weeks (or more) between shoeing/trims. Why should he be trimmed more often?

The goal with natural trimming is to encourage and maintain hoof health, and to have the horse be able to be ridden comfortably over all terrain. If we allow the foot to go too long between trims the hoof capsule deforms and the hoof is never allowed to stabilize at its optimum form and length. Basically, if the horse is not trimmed often enough the hoof is always in some stage of deformity and we are fighting a constant battle - two steps forward and one step back. Regular, frequent trimming is necessary to correct and maintain proper hoof form.
Thought 4the day: Sometimes in life we find ourselves jumping at things when riding and our four legged friends laugh as it was silly!! But then at other times when we jump we make them jump and there was nothing there really to jump at in the first place! Horses may jump at times in new situations or even in places that have possibly caused fear at some point or other. Horses are never predictable yet their not unpredictable either they just want understanding. Learn to be one with your friend and calm your nerves as they feed from us....
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