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                                  HOOFNZ’s Quarterly Newsletter • Issue #1 Summer • January 2008

                                Kick Start - 2008
                                Welcome to the first, extremely belated issue of HOOFNZ’s quarterly newsletter.
                                We would like to invite all our members, whether new or founding, young or otherwise, to use this (as a
                                good excuse if you like) to take a moment to relax, grab a cuppa, and get to know the Hoofcare
                                Organisation of New Zealand; our people ~ the committee, instructors, fellow members and the animals
                                we are here for.
                                We aim to bring you news, along with stories and topics of interest, many of which will be seasonally
                                based, as the weather affects so much of what we do, and what we deal with, both as horse owners and
                                Should you have stories or articles you would like to share with all of HoofNZ, please email
                                P.R@hoofnz.org.nz and we will aim to print as many as space will allow.
                                For now kick back, enjoy the read, and we hope you are able to make the most of these long sunny days
                                of summer.

                                Transitioning to barefoot
                                Looking at my grazing at the moment, I note the remarkable change from a few months ago, so
                                I thought it would be important to discuss the integrity of our barefoot horse’s hooves year
                                round. It was often the case that people would turn their horses out for winter and take off their
                                shoes to give them a rest, and likewise a lot of new clients come to us in winter or spring,
                                thinking they would be the easiest time to barefoot their horse, and that they will then be all
                                ready to roll in 3 months or so. To transition a horse from a life of shoes to one of being
                                barefoot takes at least 1 year, and up to 2 years or longer for horses with pathological hooves.
                                But when you consider how long it has taken the horse to get his hooves in those unhealthy
                                conditions originally, then the transition time is not so great in comparison, and it’s important to
                                hold onto the ideal of how you want your horse to be one day as you go through this transition
                                A lot of horse owners find it hard to see their horses suffer, which is often why they decide to
                                remove the steel from their hooves. However it can then be hard for some people to watch their
                                ‘tender footed thoroughbred’ (or other breed!) wince his way over the stones on the way to the
                                stable, and they may consider shoes an easier option as they feel their horse is suffering. If this
                                horse only had to walk over a small area of stones every now and then and the rest of his days
                                he is on soft ground, then of course he will feel it. I remember as a kid I had the toughest feet of
                                my friends as I was constantly without shoes at home, and I would have to piggyback them
                                over our stone driveway to the lawn on the other side. The same principles can be applied to
                                hooves. The more a horse is on hard ground, the more calloused his feet will become. It is
                                important to hold onto this thought.
                                When I transitioned my thoroughbred from shoes he was extremely wussy with stones. The
                                typical flat-footed thoroughbred that he was, he would stop on one side of the drive and walk up
                                and down the grass trying to find the narrowest place to cross to get to the stable and his feed
                                on the other side.
                                People said I was cruel for taking his shoes off and that thoroughbred’s ‘can’t go barefoot’!
                                But I had researched barefoot well and knew the process that I had undertaken with him. Each
                                day I would ask for a bit more from him and slowly built it up till he was walking the length of the
                                driveway instead of crossing the narrowest part. I would also take him for walks along the
                                tarseal road, again building up the time and distance, and I rode him for hours everywhere else,
                                thinking of each step as a step closer towards a healthy hoof. Nearly two years down the track
                                this boy is now comfortable over all surfaces, his heels have de-contracted, he has a beautiful
                                callous, and a small but definite concavity. And whenever people say that thoroughbred’s can’t
Dr Robert Bowker                go barefoot, I can prove them wrong!
[University of Michigan, USA]   So it’s important if you are transitioning your horse, and in fact for all barefoot horses, to have
                                daily contact with hard ground.
     WORKSHOP                   This may seem impossible at times with winter mud, and spring’s soft grass, but if you can walk
                                them along a road, or put a track system in with gravel/ pebbled intervals that they must cross it
                                will benefit your horses hooves in the long run, turning them over time into the go-anywhere
   08-09 April 2008             barefoot horse you want. Remember the more movement the better the hooves.
                                                                                        - Chelsea Fenwick
Contact Jenny Lomas
                                                                                                   HoofPrint NZ
                                    Barefoot hunters in the Bay of Plenty!
                                      Welcome to the first of hopefully many            I had a great day and many from the field
                                      episodes of barefoot horses “doing it” in the     assured me that they did too!
                                      Eastern Bay of Plenty.                            At the beginning of winter, a shod hunt
                                      Little do they know but the Eastern Bay of        member was giving me grief about the
                                      Plenty Hunt Club has been infiltrated by          conditions (lots of slippery, wet, clay
                                      “bare-footers”. Sorry, Dale Pederson, but         tracks), how did I find it without shoes? I
                                      we jump our horses and ponies on grass            cantered off down a clay track to
                                      with no shoes or studs!                           demonstrate the confidence I felt in my
                                      We keep a deliberately low profile but            mount’s connection with Mother Earth.
                                      numbers of barefoot ponies and horses are         No problem there, but wouldn’t you know it,
                                      gradually increasing at our hunts. Often          minutes later, we hit a sward of pure
                                      this season, we have had something like           clover. My horse slipped and slid around
                                      12-15 on the field at any one time showing        like a first timer on a skating rink! However,
                                      off their shapely appendages. Our terrain         as soon as we left that paddock we were
                                      is often difficult, not usually “big” country     back to normal.
                                      but usually short, steep hills and guts, and      A hunt this past winter was held at
                                      many tricky rickers on angles, uphill and         Tirohanga, just out of Opotiki.
                                      down dale. I am sure that none but the            Each year about the same time, we hold a
                                      most seasoned of hunters would describe it        Six Bar competition. To the uninitiated, this
                                      as “easy”.                                        is six jumps in a row, two strides apart and
                                      For much of the season our ponies and the         each fence bigger than the last.
                                      odd horse or two have plagued the Master          This year Talia Hennessy, granddaughter
                                      and Huntsman. Most of our adult hunting           of our committee member Carol Wilson,
                                      members, prefer to take things a little more      won the pony Six Bar; “Eden” is an
                                      easy in the middle of the field (usually          approximately 13.2 hh Kaimanawa pony
                                      where the hip flasks are most abundant),          that has been under natural hoof care for
                                      but all are jumping well and coping with all      the last 2 to 3 years since she was
                                      kinds of terrain.                                 purchased by Carol
                                      For myself, I have had a great season with        The final fence was over 1m 30! While
                                      two fit, going hunters and a difficult choice     three out of the four final ponies were
                                      each hunt morning. I was given the honour         barefoot!
                                      of being the Master at our annual Ladies
                                      Hunt at Hereperu, my big Clydie boy               If you’ve never tried hunting before, the
                                      “Chester” thought he was very important           last thing you have to worry about is your
                                      leading the field!                                barefoot horse or pony not being able to
                                                                                        cope with the footing.    - Sandy Hegh

HOOFNZ’s Online shop has been open for 12 months. Have you checked it out?
                                                                                        HOOFNZ Online Shop
We stock a range of products including books, CDs, trimming gear, caps & polo shirts. We add product lines to the shop on a regular
basis, so make sure you visit more than once. Our products are good quality and our prices are competitive. Each newsletter we will
feature a product or book from the Online Shop.

Paddock Paradise – Jaime Jackson          Published in 2006 by Star Ridge Publishing, USA
Contents: Lessons from the wild • In search of a natural boarding model • Paddock Paradise: the lessons applied
• An experiment in paradise.

Sneak Peak       What is Paddock Paradise? A remarkable natural environment for horses!

Welcome to paddock Paradise, natural horse care advocate Jaime Jackson’s groundbreaking adventure in natural boarding for horses!
Based on Jackson’s legendary research on wild horses, Paddock Paradise is a revolutionary model for safe, natural horse keeping, hoof
care, and the healing and rehabilitation of lame horses. The premise of Paddock Paradise is to stimulate horses to behave and move
naturally according to their instincts. “This is the key” according to Jackson, “to having physically and mentally healthier horses.” This
unique and unprecedented model is adaptable to virtually all size horse properties, regardless of climate, and fits all equine breeds
regardless of how they are used. Consider some of the following benefits for creating a Paddock Paradise for your horses:

    •   Encourages constant movement, as nature intended             •   Greater movement means natural hoof wear with fewer bills
    •   Protect horses from dangerous founder-prone pastures        • Minimizes the need for warm up exercise time before riding
    •   Helps address neurotic behavior by providing natural outlets
    •   Provides an effective means for diet and weight management
    •   Adaptable for breeding, foaling, multiple horse operations

This book is available through the HOOFNZ Online Shop. Price is $40 plus $6-50 shipping                         - Suzanne Toomey
                                                                                   HoofPrint NZ
                      "You do what?"
                      I trim horses. … But not just any old trim, I do a barefoot trim.
                      So, how did I get into this? Well, a few years ago I was in need of a farrier at the time to trim a
                      horse I had. Being new to the district where I was living and not knowing any horsey people, fate
                      intervened and I was recommended to contact someone about getting my horse barefoot
                      trimmed. I had never heard of this style of trimming, and figured a trim was a trim, what the heck.
                      Bearing in mind I had never had a shod horse, or put shoes on my horses in the past I thought it
                      was no different to what a farrier would be able to do anyway. My trimmer duly turned up and
                      trimmed my horse. I was a relatively typical horse owner, and really paid no attention to what this
                      person was doing. I was more interested in gazing off into the distance and planning my work
                      schedule, and contemplating how to deal with a stressful personal situation I was going through
                      at the time. In no time at all this trimmer person had finished the job at hand and was on their
                      way, mentioning that depending how much road riding I might be doing, then it could be
                      anywhere from 6-8 weeks that they would need to come back out.
                      Well, that was all incredibly easy. No riding did I do, but I was impressed with this pretty roll on
                      the toe area of my horses hooves - boy, they looked good.
                      My personal life went through a melt down with my then current partner and I was in the
                      unwelcome position of trying to find somewhere else to live. Well, move I did and time marched
                      on. I thought my horse could do with some company (his previous mate had died some months
                      earlier and I was very conscious of him being on his own - I have felt that to be a very "unnatural"
                      thing for a horse). I heard about a horse for sale that sounded really good so away I steam to go
                      check him out. A grey TB with the most horrifically cracked, split, flared feet I had ever seen; and
                      he was wearing shoes.
                      So, I bought him. Got him home and rang this trimmer that I had used a couple of months earlier.
                      Explained my predicament of having this shod horse and the shoes must come off - pronto!!
                      When would they please, please, please come and do this little chore, and give my now 2 horses
                      a trim. The day the trimmer arrived, I was a bit more attentive as to what was going on. How
                      long would it take for his feet to grow out all these cracks and splits I asked? So we had a
                      conversation about diet, grass and riding work. Diet and riding I didn't have a problem with, but
                      what's up with the grass element? Not bad dairy pasture was I on - not a lot of it, but at least
                      there was some green stuff for them to eat, and I just topped up with a hard feed at night.
                      Well, the trimmer kept coming out and doing the trims and I started asking more questions.
                      Boy, this person was sure giving me an education and I was just soaking it all up.
                      This barefoot modality is so much more than just a trim, and given my participation in alternative
                      health and spiritual beliefs, I was really starting to appreciate the holistic approach that barefoot
                      trimming has.
                      But my trimmer had other ideas. They turn up one day to trim my 2 horses and I am thrust little
                      thing like a cheese grater with a handle on it. “And this would be for what?” I ask. It's about time
                      you learnt to trim your own horses I was told! Horrified, I categorically stated there was no way I
                      could possibly trim any horse - I just don't know what to do or where to start.
                      No worries I was told, I'll teach you.
                      Well, nearly 4 years on, I am in fact trimming my own horses. I have 9 horses of my own
                      currently and all with very different hooves. Hooves are like fingerprints - unique and individual to
                      each and every horse. I have collected this lovely group of equines as I just can't abide bad feet -
                      so I have taken on horses that no one wants anymore and bought a couple. All loving involved in
                      the Hoofway House programme.
                      As an aside, Hoofway House is the company name I have for taking on rescue/rehab horses. My
                      long-term plan is to have "wayward youth" be involved in the rehab care of horses. And, it was
                      nearly 2 years ago that I started trimming other people’s horses. For that side of things, I am
                      called Trinity Equine - Mind, Body and Hoof. I have been studying human and equine reiki and
                      attending the appropriate courses to attain certification in that modality.
                      So, if I can trim my own horses and then be off trimming other people’s horses, then quite frankly,
                      anyone can do it.
                      If you want to enrich the life of your horse and other people’s horses, then just do it. The rewards
                      far outweigh the frustrations that one can encounter, and that's a whole other story.
                                                                                             Katie Sloane – HoofNZ
 Natural Hoof Care
     CLINIC                             ** STOP PRESS ! **                HoofNZ Trainee clinics:
                               Anatomy:                                     Opotiki ~ Saturday March 29th
  23-24 February              Business Management & Customer Relations: Opotiki ~ Sunday March 30th
                          Those coming up from the South Island can fly into Tauranga, Rotorua or Whakatane.
Contact Jenny Lomas               Whakatane is the closest airport and is approx. 45 mins from Opotiki
                         Please contact Jenny Lomas info@hoofnz.org.nz if you need help with travel arrangements

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