Barefoot Trimming and the evil shoe conspiracy (part 1)
Is barefoot trimming for you? I recently saw this website, went for a visit – I was bored and thought it would be good for laugh.
Sarah Bell’s Barefoot Trimming website is dedicated to marketing her book on barefoot trimming. You might
hope think it would be geared towards delivering the good word of barefoot trimming, but no, it is definitely a marketing tool (no, you’re a marketing tool! -I couldn’t help myself, stuff like that always comes to mind when using the word “tool”.). She is so convinced that you will love her book and want to buy it that she offers you the opportunity to sign up and receive a free download of the first 10 pages! Wow! What an amazing offer!
What she doesn’t tell you is that these first 10 pages are largely tables of content and pictures of her. Not even kidding.
Page 1: Title and big-ass picture of a horse sniffing a kids foot (which, when you think about it makes sense seeing as the term “barefoot trimming” sounds like you’re trimming the horse in your bare feet since horses have hooves)
Page 2: Features the words “This book came about from having this single thought: – ‘There had to be a better way to ride and care for our horses than the methods most people were using.’ ” Can’t we all just get along!? Why does it have to be one way or the other?
Page 3: An entire page dedicated to the dedication (1 sentence to her parents).
Page 4: Table of contents
Page 5: Table of contents
Page 6: Table of contents
page 7: Picture of her lying in the grass rubbing a dog’s belly (no, I don’t know what that has to do with barefoot trimming either…)
Page 8: A picture of her daughters (no, they’re not barefoot trimming in that photo)
Page 9: Finally some writing! -on why she wrote the book
Page 10 (labelled page 9): Informs you that if you want to read the rest of the ebook you need to go to her site and buy it.
NO WHERE IN THIS RIDICULOUS, 10 PAGE, WASTE-OF-PANTS DID SHE EVEN HINT AT ANY OF THE ALLEGED “INFORMATION” CONTAINED IN THE PURCHASABLE VERSION!
Since she couldn’t be bothered to provide any information whatsoever on barefoot trimming, we decided to do some of our own research.
Warning: this research may reflect our own personal bias as both of our horses wear shoes. Jimmy Choo’s, if you must know (HA! ya, cuz we can afford that…)
Now, I’m not a farrier and I don’t play one on TV, but from the few websites (here and here) I’ve read so far that praise the barefoot gods, it sounds like (and this is a fairly wide, but tame, generalization) they believe that shoes cause 99.9% of lameness. If a horse is sore without shoes, it’s because they’ve had shoes on and their feet aren’t used to the hard ground. Or, if a horse is considered to have naturally “bad” feet it’s because shoes were put on at a young age and the horse never had the opportunity to toughen up its tootsies. -equate the whole thing to walking barefoot; the more you do it the more callouses you develop and the less it hurts. To these people no shoe is a good shoe. In fact, they probably think Dorothy’s rub red slippers had some evil in ’em – red is the color of the devil, you know.
My favorite quote comes from barefoothorse.com where they share these pearls of wisdom:
“There are situations where shoes are used to extend the horse’s abilities beyond what nature provides. An example is stadium jumping, where the horse must have shoes with corks in order to get around sharp turns at high speed. The corks give the horse traction, but having enough traction for a tight course overstresses the ligaments and joints in the legs; no-one expects these horses to be sound and rideable to the age of 35 — or even 15. “
Hands up if you’ve seen or known of grand prix show jumpers over the age of 15!
I no longer feel the need to discuss barefoot trimming vs. shoeing – this article read my mind and summed it up quite succinctly and by a real live farrier, no less!
Hmm, we may need to devote an entire post to Dr. Hiltrud Strasser…