Go barefoot!!

Perhaps it's because I've always hated shoes in general and I tend to walk around barefoot-not around my horses, of course, I wear boots then ;)-everywhere, but I'm a big barefoot advocate.

 I don't have anything against shoes, really, but I DON'T like them unless they really need them.
A nail going into a hoof makes me cringe..

 I just hate the idea of drilling a hole into a hoof, and I'm super happy that all of my horses are barefoot. My horse's hooves are trimmed every six weeks, unless they really need it before hand OR there is an abscess or something. My farrier drives around an hour to get there and does all 11-now 12-horses hooves that day. He puts shoes on two of the horses fronts and then trims the rest.

Terrible picture, but you can see Red's barefeet!
 Here are some things I found interesting:

Facts About Having A Barefoot Horse:
The benefits of using barefoot hoofcare with your horse are endless. By using the wild mustang hoof as a model we can replicate the form and function of their hooves on domestic horses. This overview will give you a few key reasons to consider this option for you and your horse.
*TRACTION: a barefoot horse has better traction on any terrain due to the natural ability of the foot to grip the ground.
*JOINT SUPPORT: a barefoot horse has 7 times less stress put on its joints and ligaments than a shod horse!
*SHOCK ABSORPTION: the frog acts as a natural shock absorber each time it hits the ground.
*NATURAL FUNCTION: a hoof is made to expand and contract with each step to circulate blood throughout the horse's body.
We can ease the transition to full barefoot performance with the addition of boots and pads, as needed, to stimulate hoof growth. With a variety of boots and pads, finding the level of comfort for your horse as he transitions is a very simple application. The need for boots varies depending on work load, living conditions, and rehabilitation needs. I can provide any boot, any size, and pads to give your horse optimal support and comfort.

The Effects Of Having A Shod Horse:
*Horseshoes raise the foot off the ground and without the ability to touch the ground, the sole can become weak and thin and increase the risk of stone bruising or abscesses.
*The frog, the natural shock absorber of the hoof, is unable to perform its job due to being raised off the ground. This increases the concussive forces on the joints and ligaments of the horse.
*Nails used to hold shoes on can open channels for infection which can potentially cause lameness.
*Restriction of expansion and contraction of the hoof due to a shoe's hold on the hoof limits blood circulation throughout the entire horse! An atrophied frog is a direct result of this lack of blood circulation
A common misconception is that we've bred good feet out of horses.This just isn't true! Understanding the mechanics and physiology of the hoof proves this theory wrong. Natural Hoofcare can benefit all horses regardless of breed, age, or discipline. 

Of course whether or not you shoe your horse depends on not only you and the horse, but the place where you live. I ride in mostly soft ground and grass-I'm a trail rider. If you have a police horse or something and ride on concrete, maybe you should shoe. But I would look into boots beforehand.

All in all, I'm a barefoot lover. :)


  1. I guess I grew up in a horse world where almost no horses have shoes. It's so weird for me to see posts where people are advocating barefoot horses LOL! Its just so normal around here to not shoe. But I am totally with you on the benefits of barefoot ponies. PLUS it's cheaper not to have shoes put on all the time ;-)

    1. Hahaha! Most people around here keep them barefoot, but there are still a lot of people who use shoes. Sadly, "big lick" and etc is popular here in Tennessee, so that's the main reason why I talk about it so much, rofl! The price is a huge factor, a friend who shoes two of her horses fronts told me what she had to pay for them and it's crazy! Yikes!

  2. I'm the exact opposite of K.K. It's weird around here to not keep shoes on your horses, though Missy is currently barefoot...

    1. It's a 50/50 here..A lot of people use shoes, a lot of people stick with the barefoot. I'd much rather have a barefoot horse than a shoed horse..much easier and a lot of times much healthier. :)

  3. Just depends on the horse. Many are great barefoot, and many aren't.

    1. Yeah, I was wondering if horses would be okay without shoes.
      Glad to hear this!!!