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So here’s the thing. When we say all horses can go barefoot, what do we actually mean?

This statement ‘all horses can go barefoot’ gets many owners just a trifle hot under the collar.

Many of these people will have already tried barefoot but it didn’t ‘work’ for their horse, or they are of the opinion that for a horse to do any amount of decent work, then it’s common sense to use shoes to ‘support’ the horse.

Well if you’re a seasoned barefooter like I am, then you’ll know that if you take the skeptical owner’s horse, change the environment, change the diet and of course the hoofcare, then gradually that horse, that couldn’t cope, is actually starting to grow healthier feet and getting sounder.

Sometimes in order for this to happen, that horse has to change owners…why? Because the original owner simply didn’t have the mindset needed to keep their horse barefoot. They didn’t have the determination to change what was necessary at a consistent level (& that’s the key) before giving up and exclaiming ‘barefoot doesn’t work for all horses’.

Perhaps they didn’t truly know what to do in order to succeed barefoot?

I want to reassure those of you who are perhaps starting your barefoot journey, or having a few ups and downs, that the statement ‘all horses can go barefoot’ is true, and I’ll tell you why.

I have been told countless times by owners, vets, farriers either to my face or as keyboard warriors, that I and this amazing magazine, are selling something which is not achievable in the modern world, that it is spreading propaganda and giving people false hope.

These people who say this, are the ones that failed or didn’t even try in the first place. These people are hooked on a method of nailing metal to a horse’s foot, so that they can continue the practices that caused the shoe to be put there in the first place.

Sounds harsh? Yes it is…for the horse.

Here is what the statement should read in full:

“All horses can go barefoot…but not all owners”

If you want to take your horse barefoot, you can! If you are worried that your horse’s health and fitness is being compromised because of the traditional practices you have been following, then you’d be right.

This magazine isn’t selling a dream, something that isn’t achievable, this magazine is spreading the knowledge far and wide that owners need to take their horses barefoot and succeed.

Those who disbelieve it (the majority of course will not have even read the mag) are no way going to accept the reality that it’s not the horse’s fault it can’t go barefoot…it’s theirs!

I personally own 13 horses…yep I know mad! But those 13 horses will never go back into the traditional world because if they do they will go straight back to where they were when I came upon them. Every single one of my 13 horses has a story, every single one was having problems with their feet and or health…some about to be put to sleep because their current owner had been told, this horse will not survive.

Guess what….every single one is now healthy, sound and of course barefoot.

I have personally watched and helped owners with horses who were failing in the traditional world, completely succeed at barefoot when the elements that were needed to succeed were put into place and the owner had the right people and support around them.

And the best bit? It’s not that difficult.

In every issue of the mag, there are stories of how owners decided to take the shoes off their horse and go barefoot against pretty much everyone’s advice. Many of them had to learn the hard way, we’re ridiculed, targeted and often spurned, and yet still succeeded taking their horse barefoot.

Why? Because they changed the essential elements that were needed in order to succeed…and their mindset…and they stuck at it…consistently.

This magazine isn’t just for us seasoned barefooters, it’s for owners struggling to find that missing piece in the jigsaw puzzle that can help them successfully take their horse barefoot.

So, on a final note. Yes all horses can go barefoot. Yes the barefoot world is growing fast, in massive numbers everyday…and yes if you want to keep up with what is going on in this exciting world and learn how to keep your horse barefoot for life…then this mag is for you.

We are not the number 1 barefoot horse mag in the world for nothing! We work hard at making sure every issue is packed with real life stories, case studies and education to keep you company in your barefoot journey.

Don’t listen to those who say that all horses cannot go barefoot…get the right advice from the right people and watch your horse succeed!

Here’s a link to get this mag into your life now, your horse will be forever grateful.

SUBSCRIBE HERE

This mag is for every horse owner all over the world. We ship the printed copies worldwide but you can also choose to read them online, and if you sign up to our newsletter you’ll get an immediate 10% discount off your first purchase.

You see the pic attached to this post?

That is an aerial shot of my ‘track system’ when I used to live in the UK (I live in France now). See the lush green fields surrounding it? Those ‘lovely’ green pastures were why my first pony Sunny became laminitic just a few weeks after I bought him. Then I learnt the hard way how to get him better…and he’s still with us today, 20 years later, even though the vets told me he would never recover and I should put him to sleep! I wish this mag had existed then!

Of course you don’t need a track like this, but I ended up rehabbing many horses, so for me it was essential.

Don’t listen to those who say ‘you can’t…’, listen to those who say ‘you can!’

Happy Barefooting!

Lindsay, Editor

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Metal horse shoes are so ‘YESTERDAY’!?

shoes vs hoof boots

Move over Mr Metal Shoe here come the new kids on the block!!

To get your FREE in depth article “Scientific proof that hoof boots are an improvement on metal shoes” CLICK HERE

As the Editor of The Barefoot Horse Magazine I might be a bit bias, so let’s take a look at some of the general pros and cons of shoes vs boots.

The PROS of why HOOF BOOTS are BETTER than SHOES:

– Hoof boots do not invade the hoof capsule, unlike nails to secure the metal shoe to the hoof

– Shoes (and nails) always do cause a degree of deterioration of the hoof capsule over time e.g. contraction, distortion, reduction in circulation, cracking, whereas hoof boots have no such effect on the hoof capsule

– Hoof boots can be easily put on and taken off whenever the owner feels the horse needs protection, giving the owner far more control over their horse’s comfort; shoes are fixed and can only be removed and replaced by the farrier

– After the initial outlay, hoof boots are far more economical than shoes, as the owner can put them on and off without cost, totally free, unlike shoes which have a cost implication at all times

– Being made of metal & because they are worn continuously, shoes deteriorate much faster than the tough composite materials in hoof boots, meaning boots last far far longer than shoes, and can be used over and over again

– Hoof boots can be measured, purchased and fitted by the owner, shoes always need a farrier

– Hoof boots have been proven to reduce impact and therefore reduce wear and tear on the joints of the horse, shoes have been proven to increase concussive forces and therefore cause & continue to exacerbate joint/tendon issues (see FREE article download below)

– The majority of shoes are heavier than boots

The PROS of why SHOES are BETTER than BOOTS – to the owner:

– Shoes need little to no attention by the owner, they are the farriers domain and the owner has very little input

– Some owners think shoes allow horses to ‘grip’ (but this has been proven to be no more or less of a reality to either barefoot or booted horses)

– The owner has to make sure the boot fits correctly, with shoes this is up to the farrier

The CONS of both SHOES and BOOTS:

– Shoes and boots can both come off. If a shoe comes off then the horse is often very footsore and the horse is out of action until the farrier can return. If a boot comes off, other than the fact it has to be put back on again, a barefoot horse has the ability of going bare!

It doesn’t matter how many times these points are discussed, there will always be those who believe shoes are better and refuse to believe boots are any good and of course vice versa.

However, one thing is for sure, the hoof boot industry is absolutely booming, manufacturers are developing new boots all the time, and therefore that can only mean one thing….the shoeing industry is on the decline.

If you want to go barefoot but are worried about your horse ‘coping’, then booting is now a real and better alternative to metal shoes.

But don’t take my word for it….we have a great free article for you, showing some scientific research & data, proving without a shadow of a doubt that hoof boots are an improvement on metal shoes.

SUBSCRIBE HERE

Happy Booting everyone!

The BHM Team

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Progress doesn’t need qualifications

Progress quote

As is always the way, whenever you choose to do or follow something which is against the perceived ‘norm’, there are those who will ridicule you, belittle you, try to discredit you and perhaps, dare I say it, even attempt to bully you.

When you stick your head above the parapet and tell the world that you have a passion which many don’t agree with, you suddenly become criticised for even wanting to have a difference of opinion.

This is true in all walks of life, but perhaps especially pertinent on social media, where ‘keyboard warriors’ are able to ‘move in’ and take their front seat in the proverbial stone throwing competition, without having to stand face to face in the same room.

Along the way, questions are fired with no real desire to want to know the answer. These questions are not really questions directed for answering but more incredulous aspersions designed to ‘catch out’ the person to show everyone around they are worthless of having a difference of opinion. When questions are duly answered it doesn’t satisfy, so more questions arise with more intensity and, eventually, the question of qualifications will start to rear it’s head. What qualifies you to ‘preach’ to us? What qualifications have you got to ‘back up’ your claims?

No longer is your passion, a wonderful, exciting journey of discovery, it has become a distasteful itch that others wish to scratch incessantly, never finding satisfaction because, truthfully, they have no wish to.

In the barefoot world, I have been lucky to become part of a passionate band of people all across the entire globe, who, often after severe adversity, find a better way of keeping their equines healthy and strong, a way to give that equine true longevity, without a constant need to ‘prop’ them up with aids which fix nothing and only serve to mask a deeper problem which continues to become deeper and deeper.

These passionate people, many of which I have met either in person or virtually, have one thing in common, they are going against a mindset that has its roots deeply driven in tradition and convention, so deep that even those held in high esteem with the highest of qualifications, cannot grasp the simplicity and beauty of it.

And here is the interesting juxtaposition. These horse owners, who have gone against the grain, have taken on research themselves, spoken to others in the ‘same boat’, read articles, joined groups, watched videos, filled up their bookshelves and often, after an immense amount of deliberation, and even more often, totally alone, have taken the plunge to take their horse barefoot. These people in the most part have no qualifications at all to speak of with regards their new found passion. They have no degrees, diplomas, certificates in equine health, science or footcare, they have not studied for years to gain notoriety on their passion, they have just been able to use common sense, an ability to really WANT to change their horse’s lives and to cure the dreadful problems that the ones with the degrees, diplomas and certificates pontificate about but never seem to actually do.

Of course there are exceptions to this rule, there are those who have taken their passion one step further and sought out a qualification so that they can go and help others, because they have been so deeply impressed by what they have witnessed themselves in their own lives, with their own horses, that they now feel the need to go and take this knowledge further, spreading the information wider to help more horses and owners.

Much like this magazine, by being a portal for people to tell their stories, their situations, in the hope that others will resonate with them and it will help them when those with traditional qualifications didn’t.

It is an interesting aspect of human nature, that when all else begins to fail on the attack, they hark back to the qualifications question. In the hope that this, for all those around to see, will eventually clinch the argument and prove that these people with their passion are nothing better than mislead lemmings following a fad that will eventually die out….and worse, people who are spreading lies, untruths, dangerous information which will lead to equines being far worse off rather than they are now. Tradition has been around for years…why change it?

For me? I was one of those people who wanted to take that passion a little further, to help others and try and make the world better for our equines across the globe. I was already a qualified science teacher but I knew little about horses’ feet, or how to help them when they had problems. So I began to follow a passion. I absorbed as much information from every source I could think of, I didn’t, couldn’t let it go. I chewed up and spat out, and rinsed and repeated, with as many nuggets of information as I could find on my subject…much of the time to the detriment of my family life. I was getting deeper into a subject which shocked, amazed and drew me in, and I was confounded why others with the highest of qualifications didn’t ‘get it’. Why did they not understand this? Why were these animals being put to sleep when often a very simple cure was just around the corner? Why were humans so blinkered?

This awful feeling in the pit of my stomach wouldn’t go away and I kept searching. I trained in the UK, in the US and around Europe to competently trim horse’s feet. I spent time with other passionate humans who taught me things to help horses that I will always be so eternally grateful to them. I spent years learning how to handle horses naturally, carefully and calmly and I learnt how to ‘read’ them, such that I rarely ever had problems even with the most difficult of poor equines who were so traumatised by previous experiences that they showed no trust at all. It never took me too long. 

I did gain qualifications, to already add to my degree and post grad certificates…but ‘these’ qualifications were sniffed at because they were not delivered by the traditional establishments and therefore they must have meant nothing, even though by this time, I had been ‘learning’ for years.

I ploughed on. I found insurance so I could protect myself and the horses I worked on. I kept meticulous accounts and learnt the hard way how to run a successful business. I gave up my secure day job and I began to use my ‘new qualifications’ and experience as a teacher, and started to run workshops for owners desperate to learn even more about their passion. I taught others who wanted to take it further and become like me, taking their passion to that wider audience and helping more and more equines. 

It is no longer a passion…it is a way of life. I have set principles that I will never, cannot ever shift away from because I have seen for my own eyes the dreadful consequences of doing just that. I have been hurt emotionally and physically along the way, mostly by humans, hardly ever by horses, and I know how it feels to be that person beginning their passion, desperate to help their horse and feeling alone and isolated in the vacuum of the traditional world.

But PROGRESS. What a funny thing it is. As George Bernard Shaw once said:

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”

Progress will never stop. It is a train that if you wish to jump on will take you on the most amazing journey you will ever go on in your life. The progress train stops for no-one. It keeps on chugging down those tracks, occasionally attempts are made to de-rail it, but no-one EVER succeeds, until one day, the train is bursting from the seams because more and more people want to jump on board….because if there is one thing about humans….they don’t really want to be left behind. 

Have a thoughtful day

Lindsay, Editor