Like so many folks now practicing and promoting the barefoot healthy horse, Sossity first decided she needed to find a new way to help her own horse, Faith, a 4 year old Arab/Trakehner mare who had lameness issues. She decided to broaden her scope and suddenly natural hoofcare found her. It made perfect sense. But also confused her, "how could veterinarians and farriers and the 'barefoot crowd' each hold such opposite views?" She asked herself. The more she examined the situation, the more confused she became.
A friend recommended she buy Pete Ramey's book. She did. She became immediately enthralled, joining every Yahoo group she could find on barefoot horse care, bought books and DVDs from folks like, Gene Ovnicek, KC La Pierre, and Jaime Jackson. She traveled to hear Pete Ramey speak. Ultimately enrolled in AANHCP training program, and traveled to several states to mentor. "I applied to the American Hoof Association in 2008 and was approved as a certified trimmer. That was a huge accomplishment and I was at the time of approval one of less than 20 in the nation to achieve the honor." Sossity said.
Sossity is one of the founding members of Pacific Hoof Care Practitioners (PHCP) whose mission it is to provide a supportive network and educational foundation for hoof care professionals and horse owners based on a holistic and progressive approach.
She is instrumental in introducing barefoot horse health to the world of competition horses. Sossity's work with and for, world class horse trainer Shannon Peters, and Shannon's husband Steffen and his horse Ravel was recently written about in "Dressage Today" magazine, by author Kelly Sanchez.
When Steffen's 2 time Olympic horse Ravel developed a quarter crack 2 months before the London games they turned to Sossity and her husband Mario for help. Sossity had just begun to work with Shannon a few months before. Things went so well with Ravel that today there are 15 barefoot horses from Training Level to Grand Prix in Shannon's and Steffen's training barn in San Diego.
Sossity takes the Holistic approach to hoof and horse health. "The hoof is a SYMPTOM. The most perfect trim in the world can only do so much if your horse is eating a diet that does not respect and support his physiology, or if his tack is causing chronic pain and resulting compensation, if his lifestyle does not reflect his needs as a creature of movement and a social herd life, or if what he is being asked to do as his job does not respect him biomechanically or even psychologically." Sossity believes and teaches.
In addition to Shannon’s horses and those of some of her training clients in San Diego, Sossity also trims all of Akiko Yamazaki’s horses (including the Olympic horse Ravel discussed in the article). Akiko has competing FEI level horses as well as retired competition horses. Sossity also works on horses that do trails, riding lessons, therapy horses, fox hunting, reined cow work, gaited breeds, and more.
A lot of Sossity's trimming business has been through word of mouth, but she also tries to get the word out through her work with the PHCP, her website, the Wild Hearts Facebook page, as a blog contributor, and a monthly newsletter where she showcases a client or case study each month, talks about clinics she's attended or are being held, and reports on interesting studies that have come out. "I blog about basically anything relating to holistic horse health. My husband and I also have 3 horses of our own that we ride and love, and try to show by example how successful this approach to horse care really can be." Sossity said.
|It's a family affair - Mario trims, too|
Her hard work to promote holistic health and care for horses and her efforts to teach the competitive world barefoot is best, makes her a perfect fit for our Feature Friday. Thank you Sossity for all you do!
Please visit her website http://www.wildheartshoofcare.com/ for pages of information, links, pictures and contacts.
Gitty Up ~ Dutch Henry