I spoke with a lady on the phone today that had pulled the shoes off of her horse a week ago. She said that when she rode him last weekend, he was sore and now she was looking for hoof boots. I was more than happy to put her guy in Easyboot Gloves! Easy for her, very easy going for him.
Well, what is transition? Transition is the time period after you pull the shoes off of your horse until he is sound enough to walk on gravel. This rehabilitation period of several months to a year, depends on the internal damage to your horse’s foot and how you provide natural hoof care. Increased blood flow starts to rebuild internal structures that were damaged by the shoes. Until the rebuilding is complete, many horses can be sore and will need hoof boots to ride in different types of environments. Hoof pads will also help your horse immensely during the transition period.
Transition is the reason why so many horse owners have said that their horse can’t go barefoot. It can be an inconvenience for the owner and some of us just don’t have the patience. However, once you understand that horseshoes really do weaken the hooves and (I know it’s hard to admit) that we thought we were doing the right thing by keeping our horses shod and instead we’ve caused damage to our beloved friend’s feet, you can sit back and go through the transition time period. And you can do many things to make your horse more comfortable and rideable while he grows out his new and improved hooves. You, the owner and his friend, made the decision that barefoot is better. Now is the time to exercise patience and trust that your horse will heal. And he will – better than you can even imagine.
The transition period is over when the sole regains concavity, which means that the white line has tightened up completely. In general, it takes about a year of good natural hoof care before the hoof returns to complete soundness. The issue during this time period is about your horse and good natural hoof trimming and natural hoof care to rehabilitate his feet. Not about the ride that you wanted to go on (pout).
Most barefoot horses become barefoot rideable within a few weeks of pulling their shoes, given their conditions and natural hoof care. Some are rideable immediately. A non-evasive natural wild horse trim every week or so will help. Read, read, read! Act like a sponge and soak up every article about barefoot and wild horse trimming. Got a rasp? Got a Hoof Jack? Get familiar with barefoot trimming and do it yourself!