Thursday, October 16, 2014

Barefoot Transition - Questions

I went to the barn last night for a ride, and even though I knew that Abbey was due to have her shoes off, and I remembered again when I picked her hooves, I was initially not sure why she was being all squirrely when I got on to warm up. She didn't want to go forward and after a few minutes of asking her to trot out, I realized that I was being a jerk for asking because she was probably sore on her front (the only place she had shoes). This is the first time I have transitioned a horse from shoes to barefoot, so I am curious if anyone has experiences or advice to share.

Should I give her time off? Reduce rides in time and effort? How long will it take for her to go back to feeling good? I know that this will vary from horse to horse, but I would appreciate any thoughts and ideas on this in the comments.



  1. I always give mine a couple of weeks off with lots of turnout after they have shoes pulled. Moe used to be shod through the summer and fall for the eventing season, so I'd give him a couple weeks off in the pasture to transition and he'd be fine. I did the same thing with Gina when I got her and she's been barefoot since. Gina has been barefoot for 3 years and Moe for at least 7. Both have tough, hardy hooves and crunch over rocks, gravel, and all kinds of terrain with no ouchiness.

    Good luck!

    1. Thanks for the input :) That will give me time to catch up on my barn chores like cleaning and organizing stuff, and maybe even giving her a bath this weekend :)