Horse Sense

Horsey people gathered around the table to tuck into a heart-warming and well-earned feast. Exchange of polite conversation, amongst like-minded people, some of whom knew each other well and others like me, barely at all. A perfect opportunity to exchange horse stories, experiences etc. Or was it?

The lady to my right, well regarded amongst the guests, mentioned that one of her horses wasn’t shod. Oh, that’s interesting I said, my horse is transitioning to  barefoot …  and before I could finish my sentence she retorted “ barefoot” don’t talk to me about barefoot – and so I didn’t!

My challenge now is to hold your attention long enough to arouse a curiosity in you to want to know more. For this you must keep an open mind. This is not just about “barefoot” .This is a holistic horse management concept for horses, being adopted by horse owners in countries all over the world.

These people all have one thing in common: a desire to keep their horses in optimum mental and physical health. Well surely that is every horse owners wish, I hear you say? What sets these people apart is that for highly personal reasons they did the research that led them to a ground breaking concept of natural horse care that had been too long in coming.

I am taking time out to share this recently acquired knowledge with you. I am not here to judge you, but rather, for you to judge for yourself Jaime Jackson’s concept – “Paddock Paradise”

Let’s hear it from the horse’s mouth!

My Story

Like you, almost certainly, my education in horse management was traditional. I would still be practicing it today, had my horse not foundered back in 2009. Already a sick horse he was given antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs and pain killers over a 6 month period. It is my belief this triggered the laminitis that would ultimately end his life. What he suffered under “the care” of Vet’s and Farriers is nothing short of a horror story. Do I blame myself – of course I do. What they were doing to him never felt right to me, but they were the professionals and I didn’t know any other way. Meanwhile and unbeknown to me my non horsey husband was researching laminitis on the Internet. He mentioned a new concept that could help Twister and should he order the book? I wasn’t sure. He did anyway!  Well he read it first and was so totally convinced that I had to read it. I’m so glad I did.

It was too late for Twister but our horse and ponies today reap the benefits of the knowledge acquired through reading that one book. Twisters’ life was not in vain.

Please do not underestimate the saying “Prevention is better than Cure”

Other peoples stories – From Australia, South Africa, America, Israel Germany, Sweden, Bulgaria, Italy, France the United Kingdom and so many other countries – how these people discovered “Paddock Paradise” (PP) and/or what they have to say about it.

I will always have a PP wherever I live and it has been the most important thing I have ever done for my animals.

  • My trimmer kept telling me I needed to get them of the grass and referred me to a new concept called “Paddock Paradise”. After reading about it – it made perfect sense to me. I am just baffled as to why other people (who think I’ve lost my mind, and say they love their horses) just don’t get it. They used to colic fairly often. I haven’t had a single episode since. My horses are so much calmer now too.
  • I got my first horse in March 2011. Seeking out advice was difficult because everyone had a different opinion and they all seemed to clash. I decided to take matters into my own hands and trust my own judgement. I began to search online and in books and came across Jaime Jackson and PP. I have learnt so much through this process and my horses are thriving. They live like horses and they don’t have me constantly micro managing their every bodily function. I am so grateful for this knowledge.
  • I first heard of the idea of placing hay around the horses paddock to get them moving. I only had a 1/3rd acre then so I would put 2 piles in the furthest corners and one in the middle. It was the best I could do…
  • To all of you with only a very small area (½ acre – 2 horses) – it can be done!
  • I couldn’t believe how many problems everyone else had with their horses, so I asked myself – Why?
  • I stumbled on PP by chance. I read an article about slow feeders and thought – oh I love that. It will keep my fat horse from getting fatter yet never standing around without hay to munch. I started right away building a slow feeder. As I searched the Internet for better plans I found the “track” concept and it was my “AHA” moment!
  • I was looking for a barefoot trimmer on a website and the lady was looking for some land to rent for a PP. Me, being nosey had to see what it was and a year later we are preparing our own.
  • You don’t know what you don’t know. I was a traditionalist for many years and blissfully unaware of what my horses needs were on every level.
  • My eye opening experience came about when my gelding was diagnosed with Navicular. Not knowing what else to do, I started with traditional treatment. One week later we removed his shoes and he has never looked back.
  • I used to be intimidated by folks that had grown up with horses or had been in it longer than me, but I don’t feel that way anymore. I find myself saying WHY don’t more people trust in the amazing design and intelligence of horses?
  • Most of my friends don’t get it, even the two that are barefoot…….don’t understand. Hopefully one day it will dawn on them too.
  • I know not everyone has the space for a large PP, which we would all love to have, but even a little PP is better than horses just standing around in a field or stable.
  • Thank you so much JJ. You have changed the lives of so many horses.