On Barefooted Horses

Posted on

Some quotes from farriers and others on Barefooted Horses:


"I have so far had no reason to put shoes back on my horses. All of the horses have trained better, are more fit, balanced, and sound, than ever before." -- Shannon Peters, US Dressage Competitor and Trainer

"Whether or not it is feasible for a horse to go without shoes will further depend on the owners' expectations, the owners' commitment to the project and the hoof care the horse receives especially during the transition period. Much of the horse industry is involved in competitive athletic disciplines and the question arises "can this horse compete and perform at a given standard without shoes?" -- Stephen E. O'Grady, DVM, MRCVS

"Consult professionals. Across the country, more trail riders are successfully enjoying their barefoot horses over tough terrain. What's their secret? They have a team of knowledgeable professionals helping them through the process. And, as we learn more about managing this transition, the process should become simpler." --Lisa Simons Lancaster, PhD, DVMI

"Some horses turned out in rough terrain will need different hoof care than the ones turned out in a small pasture or kept in a stall. It also depends on which part of the country they’re in. Horses turned out in dry areas with their hooves trimmed properly don’t need the extra attention. Being turned out and active, the circulation in the hoof is better.

"The key thing is to educate the horse owner, then let nature and the farrier do the work." -- Javier Soto, Farrier

“Every horse is an individual,” she says, “for Hux I think barefoot offers more advantages [than shoes]: easier on his joints, better circulation in the hoof/leg, good traction, etc. Also, I never have to worry about if my horse pulls a shoe on course or what type of stud to use.” --Kelsy Smith, Eventer

Whiskey has won close to $80,000 barefoot. You know, I don’t think that every horse should be barefoot, but in some situations, and especially cutting, it can be done and I think my horse has an advantage being barefoot in a lot of pens. He’s learned how to deal with it and I think that in the next ten years we will see more disciplines, not only cutting, going barefoot;" --Wylie Gustafson

" A sound barefoot horse not only can feel the ground, she also has better traction." --Stephanie Krahl, Team Penning, Barrel Racing, Sorting

"Do draft horses need shoes? “It depends,” ...

"Traditionally, draft horses naturally have strong hooves and don’t need shoes. However, years of selective breeding focused on cosmetics rather than conformation and utility has increased the number of draft horses that require shoes year-round to keep the horses sound. Chances are if you buy a horse with good solid feet, you’ll never have to shoe a horse."  --Doug Butler, founder of Butler Professional Farrier School in Crawford, Nebraska.



Scoot Boots

Hardware Pack


Endurance Gaiter Pack (1 Pair)


Pastern Strap Lock Pack


Trail Gaiter Pack (2 Pairs)



Leave a comment

All blog comments are checked prior to publishing

Hello You!

Join our mailing list