Shoeless Hoof Care

Like most farriers, I always had a percentage of horses under my care which did not wear shoes.  This was for a variety of reasons, maybe lack of use or never saw a road, perhaps they worked mainly on surfaces or a few were simply tough enough to cope.
Certainly during my apprenticeship, horses which hunted regularly through the season would have their shoes pulled off for the summer while they had a rest period.  I have never been evangelical about 'Bare Foot' nor made any sudden decisions about a career in this direction.  Rather, it was a steady dawning on me that actually, many of the horse's feet which were not shod quite simply looked healthier.
Taking on board this notion I began to look for more instances where I could de-shoe or better still not shoe at all, as in youngsters starting to come into work.
Sadly looking back now, how ill equipped and empty was my tool box?  I could seem to get just so far with soundness yet never quite 'getting it' despite reading as much as possible.

Enter the UKNHCP ... The What???

Ok, www.UKNHCP.org.uk this was my first big breakthrough when I (Big Farrier) met up with a couple of girly trimmers (YES GIRLS!!!!) What could they introduce to me, a time served farrier? Hmm as it happened A LOT! Like so many owners who arrive at shoeless hoof care, Nic Barker and Sarah Braithwaite needed something more for their problem footed horses.  They went to America and studied 'Natural Hoof Care' with the American Association of Natural Hoof Care practitioners, qualified and set up the United Kingdom Natural Hoof Care Practitioners Association. Early on I became a member and so began the seemingly obvious, yet endless education that to have healthy feet you need a healthy horse,  Better still that statement will apply to both shod and unshod horses. Feet First is written by Nic and Sarah: It's available at www.Amazon.co.uk  or www.Amazon.com (Search: 'Feet First: Barefoot Performance and Hoof Rehabilitation') and is well worth the read!
Sarah Braithwaite www.PerformanceBarefoot.co.uk
Oops! Sorry Sarah!!
More Info More Info

Shoeless Hoof

Care

Like most farriers, I always had a percentage of horses under my care which did not wear shoes.  This was for a variety of reasons, maybe lack of use or never saw a road, perhaps they worked mainly on surfaces or a few were simply tough enough to cope.
Certainly during my apprenticeship, horses which hunted regularly through the season would have their shoes pulled off for the summer while they had a rest period.  I have never been evangelical about 'Bare Foot' nor made any sudden decisions about a career in this direction.  Rather, it was a steady dawning on me that actually, many of the horse's feet which were not shod quite simply looked healthier.
Taking on board this notion I began to look for more instances where I could de-shoe or better still not shoe at all, as in youngsters starting to come into work.
Sadly looking back now, how ill equipped and empty was my tool box?  I could seem to get just so far with soundness yet never quite 'getting it' despite reading as much as possible.

Enter the UKNHCP ... The What???

Ok, www.UKNHCP.org.uk this was my first big breakthrough when I (Big Farrier) met up with a couple of girly trimmers (YES GIRLS!!!!) What could they introduce to me, a time served farrier? Hmm as it happened A LOT! Like so many owners who arrive at shoeless hoof care, Nic Barker and Sarah Braithwaite needed something more for their problem footed horses.  They went to America and studied 'Natural Hoof Care' with the American Association of Natural Hoof Care practitioners, qualified and set up the United Kingdom Natural Hoof Care Practitioners Association. Early on I became a member and so began the seemingly obvious, yet endless education that to have healthy feet you need a healthy horse,  Better still that statement will apply to both shod and unshod horses. Feet First is written by Nic and Sarah: It's available at www.Amazon.co.uk  or www.Amazon.com (Search: 'Feet First: Barefoot Performance and Hoof Rehabilitation') and is well worth the read!
Sarah Braithwaite www.PerformanceBarefoot.co.uk
Oops! Sorry Sarah!!
MARK JOHNSON FARRIER
MARK JOHNSON FARRIER