Not all horseshoes are the same

Posted: January 31st, 2009, by melanie merrow

slips-018.jpgA lightweight, flexible, shock absorbing, non nailed on shoe would be the perfect solution for horses that need some type of support for their hooves. I do not like to see any horse in pain, and I have found it very difficult to provide all my clients with pain free hoof care by using the natural trim alone. Horses with very thin sole’s can take from 2-10 months to grow enough sole not to be sore on tough ground and I do not believe any horse should have to suffer through the transition period of taking the shoes off. I have found that some horses with hoof issues or horses that have worn shoes for many years, have sensitive soles and need protection to help transition to barefoot. Boots do offer protection but they are not perfect. They only coming in a number of sizes so they often rub and cause sores. Owners often have to buy 2-3 pairs of hoof boots because the hoof changes shape as it de-contacts and becomes more healthy.

Barefoot eventer

Posted: December 19th, 2008, by melanie merrow

My horses are proof that Thoroughbreds can live naturally too! My farrier begun trimming my horse every 4-6 weeks and large cracks began to appear on the hooves after a short while.  I also found that suddenly she becoming very touchy about being ridden on gravel particularly after having had a trim.  It wasn’t more […]

Why horse shoes?

Posted: November 20th, 2008, by melanie merrow

History tell us that the nailed-on shoe first appeared in Europe at a time when nobility and their horses began to live in castles.  Horses  were kept in small, enclosed spaces, stalls and worked on brick walkways, roads and muddy conditions the horse would have avoided in nature. When the horses were stabled, their hooves […]

Barefoot jumper under my care

Posted: November 2nd, 2008, by melanie merrow

This is Jay Jeaux owned and ridden by Cynthia Larose-Goulet. This 12 year old jumper mare that came up very lame with shoes.  An X-ray result from the vet: distal sesamoid bone on the distal surface presence of significant invaginations/calcification minor of the suspensory navicular ligament/angulation of P3-slightly tipped(2-4%).  Result from improper shoeing, huge heels […]

How to judge hoof health

Posted: April 1st, 2008, by melanie merrow

There are many ways to judge how healthy your horses hooves are. The best way for horse owners to keep themselves aware of hoof changes in by measuring changes in the hoof and keeping track of them. The only equipment needed is a normal hoof pick and measuring tape, or a precision hoof pick similar […]

So what is the problem with processed horse feed?

Posted: February 17th, 2008, by melanie merrow

One question I am often asked is, “Why are these natural people so against the feeds we have used for years?” There are a number of reasons. A certain bacteria associated with high carbohydrate grains like corn, scavenge through the lower intestine to ferment undigested carbohydrates, which the horse either could not digest or could […]

A natural trim

Posted: January 31st, 2008, by melanie merrow

This overgrown hoof is from a standard bred mare that has some hip problems and is only kept as a pasture horse. I added the red dots to outline the frog, and the white dots to show the hoof wall and bars. You can use the location of the apex of the frog and the […]

Do I need to blanket my horse?

Posted: January 24th, 2008, by melanie merrow

I am not against blankets in anyway, I own and use them when needed. When I had horses in Timmins Ontario, I would put blankets on them in the -20 to -40 days. But my horses had a good coat and only needed the blanket on windy days as a result. In the wild, horses […]

Rescue barefoot horse competes in Eventing!

Posted: January 7th, 2008, by melanie merrow

I received the following story from Anne Perry Brown who received a lame horse and through natural rehabilitation made him sound to the point that the horse could successfully compete in eventing barefoot! “The horse’s name is Cappolaire. He raced, and was off the track for more than a year with a woman in Lexington, […]

Conventional versus natural farrier standards

Posted: December 14th, 2007, by melanie merrow

Notice the high heels and sever contraction. Zero frog support equals less hoof circulation means less blood flow. Dull and dry hoof wall, small digital cushions and bulbs all show an unhealthy hoof. The entire condition of the hoof was improved over six weeks with a natural trim, 24/7 turnout and a hay only diet. […]