Interested in going barefoot but unsure of the benefits or even wary of the damage you think it may cause your horse's hoof? Then take a moment to compare the two in this preliminary study comparing shod vs. barefoot using a unique approach with thermography.
I think it's very important to know why we use the methods of horse care that we do. Do not simply follow along with what your grandpa taught you because his grandpa taught him and it's been tradition (and worked just 'fine' so far) or it's what the mainstream of horse owners are doing. If you can't make an argument for your choices then you should consider researching the pros and cons of your method as compared to other methods until you are able to have a complete understanding and can make an educated decision. How many things have you just always done with your horse because you learned it was the 'right' way to do it when it came to things like shoeing vs. barefoot, vaccinating vs. not vaccinating, or alfalfa vs. grass? Again, I'm not trying to sell one way or another here - I only want to emphasize that we need to take responsibility for our horse's total well being and make the best choices we can for him.
To healthy horses! :)