As a lot of girls do, I fell in love with horses at a young age. They became my passion and my focus through my teen years and carried me through young adult-hood. I learned a lot about responsibility, hard work, and even a lot about myself through my work with horses. But never so much as what I've learned since narrowing my focus even more onto their hooves. As the saying goes - No hoof, No horse. With that in mind, I began a on-going quest to learn all that I could. Besides the infinite amount of information you can read on-line, I spent a week in Canada with Lisa Huhn of Equinextion, spent a week in Oregon at a Strasser clinic before finally settling on formalizing my education with Equine Soundness based out of S. Carolina. During my time at Equine Soundness, I had the good fortune to study under what I consider some of the best instructors available.
Getting interested in hooves and settling on barefoot hooves are not necessarily synonymous. It all started with a pony. Your basic, run of the mill, rugged, grade pony mare. When we got her in 2005, I can only imagine that Sprinkles had never lived in a stall, never worn shoes and probably never had grain (at least I hope she didn't, she is the proverbial air-fern). I started noticing that anytime I rode her on the trail, she would try to avoid all rocks. The dirt road leading up to the trail was littered with small rocks and she would shorten her stride and "tippy toe". She was barefoot at the time, and knowing no different, I started contemplating putting shoes on her. At first I resisted because of the cost. I spent a lot of time on-line and kept seeing a reference to the performance barefoot trim. I wondered how this differed from a regular barefoot trim and researched. The more I read, the more I understood and the more it all made sense to me. By getting the horses back to a more natural environment as nature intended, we set the horse up to thrive. Both mentally and physically.