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Conclusion – The Barefoot Paradigm

The Conclusion of Yvonne Welz’s The Barefoot Paradigm

What about differences of opinion regarding trimming? Isn’t that a controversial area? I say, vive la différence! Isn’t it wonderful that we don’t all think alike? Isn’t it great that there are so many people out there exploring this new frontier? Because while some may theorize that trimming is self-evident—trimming is always a man-made activity. Humans trim, therefore we can’t ever really call it “natural.” But we can aspire to the natural, and attempt to discover the best ways to help our domestic horses keep their feet shaped as naturally as possible.

Now a special note: this is a hard thing to write, but I feel it is so important, I’m willing to stick my neck out for it. Nothing breaks my heart more than to see members of any barefoot group (association, organization, school, etc.) launch a public attack on any other barefoot group, or even upon barefoot individuals. Usually it is done in the name of “good,” as the attackers often speak of protecting the horse, or trying to educate those they believe are ignorant—but all I see are stones being thrown in a glass house. A whole lot of bad things have been done in the name of “good.”

If you truly love and care about horses, and about the barefoot movement—and not self-promotion—I urge you to think before you condemn another barefooter, because you literally shoot your own self in the foot. You have a right to your own beliefs—stick to them, present your own methods and be proud of them, and treat everyone else with respect. At the same time, be humble, and continue to learn from all sources. You would be surprised what you can learn from unexpected places.

Likewise, individual barefoot owners and trimmers, please think carefully about your words and actions, and consider how you can promote the good of barefoot as a whole. Our best way to success is to lead the way through our own good results. There is no need to condemn horseshoes, or people who live within a different paradigm.

Finally, through the Barefoot Paradigm, I want to introduce a new concept, and that is unity. Despite our different trimming theories and systems, and focus on various horse sports, activities or philosophies, we have so much in common! We need team spirit, so I’ve come up with the idea of “Team Barefoot” as a generic catch-phrase.

If you believe in the Barefoot Paradigm, you are already an honorary member of Team Barefoot! Be proud of us all, the entire community, everyone who has made the choice to do better by the horse. We’ve come a long way in this past decade, but we can go a whole lot further if we do it together! Go Team Barefoot! If you like this idea, please share it!

About the Author

Yvonne and her husband James started The Horse’s Hoof in September of 2000. James is a former computer systems administrator and printshop/technical equipment guru who gave up his career to become a barefoot hoofcare professional. Yvonne is a former desktop publishing wizard who transferred her skills over to this company. And so The Horse’s Hoof came into being, initially as a website, and then as a printed publication to support the new interest in barefoot horse care.

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