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Bare Remedy Equine Podiatry

Naomi Garner, Barefoot Trimmer

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What Is Equine Podiatry?

Equine Podiatry is the specialism in shoeless hoof care, working with and actively promoting owners to improve the health of their equine's hooves. An Equine Podiatrist works holistically, looking at the whole equine rather than just the feet, and will be able to give advice on hoof healthy management, diet and care.
 
An EP's key motto is 'do no harm', the hoof is a complex structure, but has the innate ability to heal itself given the right help. An EP can work closely with your vet, bodyworker and nutritionist to create an all-round healthier animal.
An EP does not apply any permanent fixing to the hoof, in the UK only a registered farrier is allowed to shoe horses.

What is the difference between an EP and a Farrier trim?

There are many ways to trim and balance a hoof, but in the end all hoof care professionals should reach the same goal. Farriers are highly skilled at fitting shoes and are taught how to keep equines barefoot. Some Farriers specialise in barefoot horses and even go through the same courses as many barefoot trimmers do to further their education.

The main difference between an Equine Podiatrist and a Farrier is the focus. A client who has hired an Equine Podiatrist often does so for the extras we are trained to provide, to look holistically at the equine. Shoes are not something we can utilise ourselves but are a viable option to a Farrier and are something they are taught to use as an aid to improve pathologies. For pathological cases EP's can utilise remedial trimming, boots, environmental and dietary changes instead to great effect.



What To Expect From Me

Consultations- At first visit I will collect as much information as I can from you and your equine. Keeping and tracking information is vital to an Equine Podiatrist, we're not there to just trim the hooves, we want to actively improve them. I will fill in forms about your horse's health, management, diet and routine. I will want to see the equine move as long as they are comfortable to, so I can assess their gait and take photos of the hooves. 

 

Hoof Evaluation Form- After every visit I will fill in a form detailing any changes in environment, diet and management along with an evaluation of the hooves. Forms are vital to track changes and discover triggers that can lead to ill health. I also like to take regular photo updates so it's easier for clients to visualise progress and changes. Each visit you will get an email with written recommendations and anything else I think you need to know. At all times the information I obtain can be made available to you if that is something you would be interested in. 

 

Equine Behaviour- Many equines can become fearful of having their legs handled which is something I will avoid. Pushing an equine too far will only cause more problems in the long run and as hoof trimming is vital to the health of the animal it is important to keep them happy and comfortable. With my current training in Equine Psychology I have learnt about how behaviour occurs and how to change behaviour. I am always trying to learn more and will gain advice from behaviour specialists if something is outside my understanding. 

 

Boot Guidance- If your equine is in need of boots I can measure the hooves for you as part of my consultation, I do not supply boots as there are so many types and great websites to buy them with quick delivery. These websites also offer a whole host of information and fitting advice as is their speciality. I do have the Cavello fit kit to assist in boot fitting and keep a few sizes and other brands for emergencies.

 

Topical Products- If your equine is in need of topical products I can advise you what to purchase and where from. I do carry a selection of my favourite products if you want to see what they are like before buying. There is such an expansive market in hoof care topicals, some products can be very popular but actually detrimental to hoof health. If you wish to talk through what you are using you can ask during the consultation. I do carry stock of Red Horse products and can order ahead of the visit if you have something you would like in particular. 


Useful Links

  • https://www.epauk.org/about-equine-podiatry/
  • https://www.epauk.org/about-equine-podiatry/articles/hoof-anatomy-a-beginners-guide/
  • https://www.epauk.org/about-equine-podiatry/articles/working-with-an-ep/
  • https://www.epauk.org/membership/our-members/map/