Natural Hoof Care
Natural hoof care, also known as barefoot trimming, is keeping and working horses without shoes.
It is not merely taking the shoes off, it is returning the hooves to the natural state of health that enables wild horses to travel 15 miles per day on rough terrain without shoes.
After discovering this practice and the work of Jaime jackson and Peter Ramey, we returned our horses’ hooves to their natural state in 2008 with the help of Dermot Mc Court, an ex farrier with huge expertise in the area of keeping horses without shoes. All our horses have been barefoot ever since, and we’ve been doing all the trimming ourselves.
It is important to realise that without trimming and with insufficient natural wear, domestic horses’ hooves would grow too long and distorted, and the horn would not grow strong enough for the horse to be working comfortably on hard ground. So regular trimming is essential for healthy hooves. Once a horse is fully transitioned to barefoot, they can be worked and ridden without shoes on any type of ground.
Keeping horses barefoot has many advantages: if you’re doing the trimming yourself, it is far cheaper that shoeing, you never miss a ride because of a lost shoe, but most importantly, barefoot horses are healthier and happier as their hooves are allowed to work the way nature intended them to.
We are very passionate about Natural hoof care and have been actively promoting it in Ireland, and running trimming courses for horse owners since 2009
WHAT TO EXPECT
The course starts in the morning with an introduction to natural hoof care. We talk about the anatomy of the hoof, discuss the pro and cons of natural hoof care versus shoeing, and look at the practicalities of trimming your horse yourself. After a short lunch break, there is a trimming demonstration, which includes an explanation of how to handle a horse for trimming with emphasis on safety and making the job easier for your horse and your back. The rest of the day is taken up by trimming practice. Everyone gets a chance to put rasp to hoof, and by the end of the workshop, participants will have a good idea of what a healthy hoof looks like, and will have the knowledge and confidence needed to do a maintenance trim on a fully transitioned barefoot horse.
PRICE AND WHAT’S INCLUDED
The normal cost of the course is €120 and includes 6 hours of tuition, lunch and course notes.
2t6h of July. The course starts at 9.30 (take the 8.30 ferry from Roonagh) and finishes at 4.30
Discounts and financial assistance
We offer a €80 discounted price for those who can’t afford the normal price. If this is still too high, please contact us!