Originally Posted by princessfluffybritches
I wonder what the difference is between a barefoot trim, a natural trim, and a well balanced trim with a blunted edge to prevent chips and flares?
A good trim is a good trim, isn't it?
I read a couple books about the natural hoof after my shoer introduced me to it. There are some differences between trimming styles but how different really depends on the person doing the trimming and who trained them. Basically the natural hoof trim was developed by looking at how horses feet naturally develop out on the range and immitating that. There's places where hoof is removed to promote flexing of the entire hoof. A "normal" trim leaves behind more of a flat surface for horses to walk on and so doesn't promote as much flex. Flexing allows a horses frog to perform it's function in life better. For those who don't know, frogs help pump blood in the legs. So a frog that is allowed to function properly will make for a sounder horse.
It's really easy to see the differences with diagrams, not so easy for me to explain without a hoof in my hand.