Posted on

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

Posted on

Can you JUMP your horse BAREFOOT or BOOTED?

Jumping booted

Well the obvious straight answer to us here in the barefoot world is YES! 

But perhaps if you are contemplating taking your horse barefoot, you might be being put off from doing so because you are worried you won’t be able to carry on doing all the fun things you could do (or maybe ‘were’ doing) in shoes.

It is a rather bizarre notion that the completely accepted normal in the horse world is horses wearing shoes (or at least it ‘used’ to be). People shoe their horses because they feel that the shoes will give support, traction, protection and some even believe it gives their horse comfort. Well I’m not going to go into details about the multitude of problems shoes cause in this post, which of course out weigh any potential benefit there might have once been, but rather focus on all the positive examples of owners competing, hacking, trekking, eventing, doing dressage, endurance, western….and of course JUMPING their horses barefoot or booted.

Owners who truly believe that their horse needs shoes for jumping will tell you that it is ‘safer’ for a horse, they will be able to corner with more traction, land better, jump higher….the list goes on…but truly, if you are someone who believes this, then all I can say to you is you have never jumped around a course, whether indoors or outdoors, show jumping, cross country or eventing, on a sound, healthy barefoot horse.

Lets take one example (we have so many examples in the mag), a lady called Holly Coetzee, who jumps her horses regularly in competition, not only barefoot but bitless too. Holly has featured many times in our magazine and is an ambassador for what can truly be achieved with horses who were previously written off as no-hopers, taking them to winning heights over and over. Holly featured on the front of Issue 18 and Issue 14 and says inside:

“My boy was a superstar at the FBMA international showjumping cup in Abu Dhabi….with a clear including the Joker in the 1.10m accumulator class on day one…..Interesting to note we were competing on GRASS with guess what…? NO SHOES!! Every other horse was fully studded up. Food for thought eh?”

Holly sends us regular updates and we have one coming up in Issue 20 out on November 1st (pre-orders available very soon). Holly is just one example of so many owners we feature in the magazine every single issue, who are able to carry on and do more and often far better than ever before, barefoot. Not only is Holly doing well with her own horses, she’s such a shining example that she’s encouraging more to join her and compete alongside her & her horses, all barefoot and mostly bitless!

But what about booted? Can horses jump in boots? Won’t they come off, get in the way, cause the horse to slip, create more problems? Again perhaps the only way to allay all these fears is to feature people who are jumping barefoot in all different kinds of boots and again succeeding. These owners want to shout about it from the rooftops because so many others who think that nothing is better than shoes can’t believe (and often WON’T believe it’s possible).

In issue 15 rider Ingvild Surdal, from Norway, who rides her horse in Equine Fusions in both dressage and eventing tells us how she chose to keep her horses barefoot and booted because she experiences very little in the way of injuries on her horses as well as many other positive benefits, such as improved circulation in the feet which improves overall health of the horse.

Some of you are familiar with one couple we often feature in photos, Carl and his horse Pegasus who jump wearing Cavallo hoof boots…this talented pair prove without a shadow of a doubt that horses who jump in boots have absolutely no problem at all.

If you check out our Competing Update feature which appears in most of our issues (see the contents of each issue on the mag website to find out), you will see lots and lots of examples of owners jumping barefoot and booted, with both horse and rider truly loving what they are doing.

On a final note, Issue 20 we have and interview with 3 ladies all who jump in Scoot hoof boots. Some fabulous pictures and great content, so watch this space for pre-orders to make sure you don’t miss that issue.

And one more final final note…our printed issues are very popular so if you want to be absolutely sure to receive a printed copy of the mag, the best way is to subscribe as you will always have a printed copy reserved for you…otherwise it’s take your chances or of course alternatively read the mags online – they look awesome on the net too!

SUBSCRIBE HERE

Happy Jumping!

Lindsay, Editor

p.s. here are the links to the issues we have mentioned in this post:

Click here for Issue 14

Click here for Issue 15

Click here for Issue 18